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, 154 (1), 79-83

Studies on the Age of Puberty of Male Camels (Camelus Dromedaries) in Saudi Arabia

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Studies on the Age of Puberty of Male Camels (Camelus Dromedaries) in Saudi Arabia

S E Abdel Rahim. Vet J.

Abstract

Aspects of sexual development and attainment of sexual and breeding maturity were studied in two groups of Najdi camels (Mojaheem and Wadah), maintained in stalls under good nutritional conditions. Body weight, testes diameter and degree of penile freedom were recorded weekly. Sexual maturity was assessed by the examination of semen collected by an artificial vagina. Puberty was defined as the stage when the animal was able to produce viable sperms. Mating, followed by strong jerks and ejaculation of mature sperms, was taken to indicate onset of breeding maturity. Mojaheem camels reached sexual maturity at a significantly younger age and heavier weight (164 weeks and 360 kg) than Wadah camels (182 weeks and 336.5 kg) (P < 0.001). Complete separation of the penis from preputial adhesions occurred at an average age of 138.6 weeks in both breeds. At the point of sexual maturity, the mean percentage of live spermatozoa was 65.1 +/- 5.2 while percentage of abnormal sperms was 17.6 +/- 2.2; total motility was 40 +/- 16% and progressive motility (48 +/- 2.2% (semen pH range 7.8-8.2). The percentage of live sperm was 65 +/- 1.5 (normal sperms 82 +/- 4). It is suggested that the encouragement of rapid growth during the pubertal period in camels managed under good nutritional and environmental conditions could assist early sexual development and breeding maturity.

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