|Titolo||A comparison of quality of the fleece and follicular activity between sheared and non-sheared yearling alpacas (Vicugna pacos)|
|Tipo di pubblicazione||Articolo su Rivista peer-reviewed|
|Anno di Pubblicazione||2020|
|Autori||Pallotti, S., Pacheco C., Valbonesi A., and Antonini Marco|
|Rivista||Small Ruminant Research|
The objective of this trial was to determine if an anticipated first shearing at 10 months of age affects skin characteristics and fibre quality in alpacas in order to assess the possibility of practice two different shearings over a period of 16 months in the animals destined for slaughter. Twenty alpaca Huacaya (10 females and 10 males) were randomly assigned to two groups named Group S and Group NS. Group S alpacas were sheared in December at the age of 10 months, when fibre had reached the length of 12.78 cm. Group NS alpacas were not sheared and their fibre length in December at the age of 10 months was of 13.11 cm. Skin biopsies and fleece were sampled from each animals at 10, 11, 12, and 16 months of age. The recorded data were used to calculate the fibre diameter, the fibre length, the percentage of active secondary follicles and the ratio of secondary to primary follicles. Data were analysed as a split-plot design with the shearing effect as whole-plot, the age effect as subplot and the animals as replication term in testing the shearing effect. Fibre diameter, percentage of active secondary follicles and S/P ratio showed no statistically significant differences between treatment groups and age. Significant different (P < 0.05) between treatment groups and age were observed only for the fibre length. At the end of the trial the fibre length was of 7.71 cm and 17.4 cm for the sheared and non-sheared animals respectively. This implies that during the six months following the shearing of 10 months old alpacas from the Group S (from January to June), the fleece length had increased by 7.71 cm and 4.29 cm in sheared and non-sheared animals respectively. In other words, the fibre length in sheared alpacas showed an increase compared to the fibre from non-sheared one of 3.42 cm (+79.7 %). This result showed that shearing increased fibre growth in yearling alpacas. Based on our trial, breeders could practice two different shearings, first at 10 months of age and later at 16 months of age right before slaughtering, in order to harvesting two batches of fine kid fleece with an average length of 12.78 cm and 7.71 cm. © 2020 Elsevier B.V.
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