Production and quality of meat from hair sheep grazing on Tanzania grass and supplemented with different protein levels


Dominga Hernández-Canul
Aldenamar Cruz-Hernández
Armando Gómez-Vázquez
Alejandra Govea-Luciano
J. Efrén Ramírez-Bribiesca
Alejandro Plascencia-Jorquera
Alejandro Cordoba-Izquierdo
Ricardo Martínez-Martínez


Growth, Carcass, Pelibuey, Crude Protein, Panicum maximum.


Objective: To evaluate the effect of a supplementary feeding (with different crude protein (CP) levels) in the yield and growth performance and meat characteristics of hair lambs grazed on Tanzania grass.

Design/Methodology/Approach: A 120-d-1 experiment was conducted; it included four treatments and seven replications in a completely randomized design. Twenty-eight hair lambs (22.6 ± 1.6 kg LW) were allowed to graze on Tanzania grass (Panicum maximum) and were provided concentrate feeds (with 10, 12, 14, and 16% crude protein). The aim was to assess the effects of the latter food on growth, carcass characteristics, and meat quality.

Results: Compared with the lambs fed with 10, 12, and 14% CP, the heaviest carcasses (P<0.05) were obtained from lambs fed with 16% CP. The percentage of crude protein and fat of the biceps femoris linearly increased (P<0.05) as the CP percentage increased in the concentrate feed. Meat color, water retention capacity, and cutting force were not impacted by the CP percentage of the concentrate feeds. Compared with the lambs fed with 10, 12, and 14%, the lowest palmitic acid percentage and the highest oleic acid percentage were found in the meat of lambs fed with 16% CP.

Study Limitations/Implications: A high area was selected to avoid excessive rain.

Findings/Conclusions: Compared with the lambs fed with 10, 12, and 14% CP, the lambs grazed on Tanzania grass and supplemented with 16% CP grew more, recorded a higher carcass yield, and their meat had a better unsaturated fatty acids ratio.

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