Relationships between body- and udder-related type traits with somatic cell counts and potential use for an early selection method for water buffaloes (Bubalus bubalis)
By: Xinxin Zhang, Kaifeng Niu, Wei Wang, Aftab Shaukat, Xuhong Zhao, Zhiqiu Yao, Aixin Liang, Liguo Yang
Some type traits (TTs) have been reported to affect somatic cell count (SCC) in bovine milk, which result in mastitis to some extent, but the correlation between SCC and TTs of water buffalo has been poorly understood. Here, a total of 1908 records from 678 buffaloes were investigated. The correlation between 45 TTs and somatic cell score (SCS) was analysed, and the optimal growth curves of TTs highly correlated with SCS were fitted. Our result showed that high rear legs (>48 cm) and short teat crossing distance (<17 cm), and narrow teat circumference (<11 cm) were correlated with low SCS. We obtained correction co-efficients for two TTs highly correlated with SCS of water buffalos from young age (2 mo old) to first lactation (35 mo) by fitting the optimal growth curve for rear leg height and teat crossing distance. This study provides theoretical support for early selection for water buffaloes that are less susceptible to mastitis, and lays a foundation for improving milk quality and promoting healthy development of water buffalo dairy industry.
Read the full article in the Journal of Animal Science.