Monitoring of somatic cell count variations during lactation in primiparous and multiparous Turkish Saanen goats (Capra hircus)


Abstract: In this study, a total of 28 Saanen does were used to evaluate the relationship between somatic cell count (SCC) and milk yield. The study included 14 first-lactation (primiparous) does and 14 does in second lactation or greater (multiparous). Individual milk samples from both morning and evening milkings were taken every 15 days throughout the lactation period of 7 months. While somatic cell counts were higher during the evening milking (840.40 versus 532.30 cells mL-1; 1050.40 versus 759.70 cells mL-1), milk yields were lower during the evening milking (115.40 versus 193.80 kg; 177.40 versus 280.00 kg) for both primiparous and multiparous goats. Parity of the does affected the variables significantly, except for days in milk. Primiparous does had lower milk yields and SCCs than multiparous does. Overall, the mean SCC, logarithmic SCC, days in milk, and milk yield were 686.40 × 106 cells mL-1 and 905.10 × 106 cells mL-1 (P < 0.05), 5.81 and 5.94 (P < 0.05), 203.33 and 207.58 days (P > 0.05), and 309.20 and 457.40 kg (P < 0.05) per doe per lactation, for primiparous and multiparous goats, respectively. Goat milk samples contained high SCCs and exceeded the requirement of 1 × 106 mL-1 of the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance (PMO) during most of the late lactation stages; however, the overall SCC mean was under the PMO limit. The SCC was negatively correlated with milk yield, but the correlation coefficient was not found to be significant (P > 0.05). As lactation progressed, the SCC increased and milk production decreased in primiparous and multiparous goats. The results of this paper could be useful for the development of acceptable goat milk SCC standards in Turkey.

Keywords: Somatic cell count, Saanen, milk yield, correlation

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