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The effect of diet, parity, year and number of kids on milk yield and milk composition in Maltese goat

Carnicella, D., Dario, M., Ayres, Maria Consuelo Caribe, Laudadio, V., Dario, C.
Small ruminant research 2008 v.77 no.1 pp. 71-74
parity (reproduction), correlation, lactation duration, lactose, animal nutrition, milk proteins, goat breeds, goats, dairy animals, forage, reproductive traits, milk fat, ewes, kidding rate, feed concentrates, twins, milk yield
The aim of the present study was to study the effects of forage/concentrate ratio, year, parity and number of kids on milk yield (MY), lactation length (LL) and milk composition (fat, protein and lactose) on 180 Maltese goats analysing 530 milk samples collected from 2000 to 2002. The main average results were: MY=288.2kg, LL=254 d with 3.5% fat, 3.4% protein and 4.6% lactose. Forage/concentrate ratio significantly affected MY and fat being highest in goats receiving a ratio of 65/35. Milk yield in goats fed with a ratio of 35/65 was richer in fat (3.6%). The protein and lactose content was not affected by the different ratios. The effect of diet on fat content was small but significant. Parity influenced all the factors considered, in particular goats in >=4th parity, had longer LL (257 d) and consequently a higher milk yield (302.1kg). Goats kidding twins yielded more milk and had longer lactation (P <0.001).