ISSN: 0041-3216 (Online), 0041-3216 (Print)
Volume 66 Number 3
Reproductive performances of N' dama and West African Shorthorn cattle in the humid forest zone of Ghana
Data on the reproductive performances of two indigenous breeds of beef cattle, N'dama and West African Shorthorn (WASH), accumulated over a six-year period (1980-85), were analysed. There were no significant differences between the two breeds in terms of birth weight, age at weaning, age at first calving, calving interval and postpartum return to oestrus. However, N'dama calves were significantly heavier (P < 0.05) than their WASH counterparts. Sex ratios were apparently not influenced by breed, neither differing from the expected 50/50 ratio. For both N'dama and WASH, calf birth weights were significantly (P < 0.05) reduced in the dry season (November-March). In addition, postpartum return to oestrus was delayed by the dry season but weaning age, weaning weight and pre-weaning mortality to either three or eight months were not influenced by season.
Keywords: Reproductive performance; N'dama; West African Shorthorn; Humid forest zone; Ghana