Detailed genetic analysis of feeding behaviour in Romane lambs and links with residual feed intake.

TitleDetailed genetic analysis of feeding behaviour in Romane lambs and links with residual feed intake.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsMarie-Etancelin, C, François, D, Weisbecker, J-L, Marcon, D, Moreno-Romieux, C, Bouvier, F, Tortereau, F
JournalJ Anim Breed Genet
Volume136
Issue3
Pagination174-182
Date Published2019 May
ISSN1439-0388
Abstract

Breeding strategies based on feed efficiency are now implemented in most animal species using residual feed intake (RFI) criteria. Although relevant, the correlated responses of feeding behaviour traits resulting from such selection on RFI are poorly documented. We report the estimated feeding behaviour at three time levels (visit, meal and day) and genetic parameters between the feeding behaviour traits and their links with RFI and its components. Feed intake, feeding duration at three time levels (per visit, meal and day), feeding rate, number of visits and time-between-visits were estimated for 951 Romane lambs fed via automatic concentrate feeders. Heritability estimates of feeding behaviour traits ranged from 0.19 to 0.54 with higher estimates for the day level than the visit level. Daily feed intake was not genetically linked to feed intake at the visit level, whereas feeding duration between visit and day levels was moderately correlated (R  = +0.41 ± 0.12). RFI was not significantly correlated with feeding rate, but was positively linked to feed intake and feeding duration at the day level (+0.73 ± 0.09 and +0.41 ± 0.13, respectively) and negatively at the visit level (-0.33 ± 0.14 and -0.22 ± 0.17, respectively). Selecting animals with lower RFI values might modify their feeding behaviour by increasing feed intake and feeding duration at the visit level but decrease the number of visits per day (+0.51 ± 0.14).

DOI10.1111/jbg.12392
Alternate JournalJ. Anim. Breed. Genet.
PubMed ID30945778