Morphological Characteristics of the Indigenous West African Dwarf Goat in the Four Agro-Ecological Zones in Sierra Leone
Keywords:WAD goats, Agro-ecological zones, Morphological traits
Data collected from 230 West African Dwarf (WAD) goats in four agro-ecological zones in Sierra Leone. They consist of 110 males and 120 females classified into five age groups as follows: Kids (below one year), Yearling (1 – 2 years), Young adult (2 – 3 years), Adults (3 – 4 years), Mature (4 - 5 years), and Old (over 5 years). Predefined Adapt Map protocol used to determine the collection of body measurements for Chest (Heart) girth (CG), Height (HW), Body Length (BL), Width of pin bones (PB), Width of points of shoulder bones (SB), Ear length, Horn length and Scrotal circumference using a measuring tape. Body weight measurements obtained using digital hanging scale. Coat color data obtained by visual observation. The data analyzed using Variance Model (ANOVA) procedures of Statistical Analysis System (SAS) version 6.12 Software and post hoc mean separation done using Duncan Multiple Range Test (DMRT). In conclusion, indigenous WAD goats show little morphological variation across agro-ecological zones. Minor variations occur between male and female goats in their respective age groups. Body weights can be predicted from both body length and hearth girths. Therefore urgent need is required to select, multiply and distribute high performing males to many communities nationwide identified with high levels of inbreeding.
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