ISSN: 0041-3216 (Online), 0041-3216 (Print)
Volume 79 Number 1
The influence of humid climate on the cardio-respiratory system of West African Dwarf sheep. (68)
The cardio-respiratory responses of 25 West African Dwarf (WAD) sheep to humid climate changes were studied at the Sheep Unit of the University of Nigeria Research Farm, Nigeria, between 0630 h and 1860 h at 3-h intervals for 13 weeks, during the dry season (DecemberFebruary). Most of the environmental variables were at their peak at 1530 h. The animals exhibited the highest rectal temperature (39.7°C), pulse rate (79.36 beats min-1), and respiratory rate (76.2 breaths min-1) at 1530 h. There were negative regressions between rectal temperature and ambient temperature (Y = 26.92 + 0.09X), pulse rate and ambient temperature (Y = 36.99 + 1.36X), and between respiratory rate and environmental temperature (Y = -66.6 + 4.33X). Respiratory rate was positively correlated (P < 0.05) to the ambient temperature (r = 0.97), radiation intensity (r = 0.46), and wind velocity (r = 0.86), except the relative humidity which showed a negative relationship (r = -0.74).
Keywords: Humid climate; Cardio-respiration; West African Dwarf sheep; Temperature; Pulse rate; Respiratory rate