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Conformation characteristics of suckling lambs carcasses from the Spanish local breeds Churra and Castellana and the non-native breed Assaf determined using digital photographs

Caro, Irma, Alaiz-Rodríguez, Rocío, González-Castro, Victor, Quinto, Emiliano J., Mateo, Javier
Small ruminant research 2018 v.160 pp. 89-94
carcass weight, digital images, females, males, ovine carcasses, photographs, sheep breeds, suckling, Spain
This study aimed to determine and compare the conformation of suckling lamb carcasses from three sheep breeds produced in Spain, two local and one non-native. A total of 52 and 55 carcasses from the local breeds Churra and Castellana, respectively, and 54 from the non-native breed Assaf (92 male and 69 female in total) were evaluated for their conformation characteristics using dorsal- and side-view photographs. Results showed that, with similar carcass weight means, Castellana carcasses were longer than Assaf ones and Churra carcasses tended to have intermediate values. Conformation of Churra carcasses did not significantly differ from that of Assaf carcasses in the dorsal view. However, the carcass side-view measurements showed significant differences between the latter and the other two breeds. The thoracic cage of Assaf carcasses was smaller than that of Castellana and Churra carcasses. No effect of sex on conformation was observed.