Authors: NEVENA MAKSIMOVIC, SLAVCA HRISTOV, BRANISLAV STANKOVIC, MILAN P. PETROVIC, CVIJAN MEKIC, DRAGANA RUZIC-MUSLIC, VIOLETA CARO-PETROVIC
Abstract: The aim of this study was to investigate changes of serum testosterone, scrotal circumference, body weight, and semen characteristics in a Meat Institute Sheep (MIS) population during their developing period (between 3 and 17 months). Correlative relationships among parameters were also tested. Body weight and scrotal circumference were measured monthly, blood samples for testosterone levels were taken bimonthly (3-17 months), and semen samples were collected by an electroejaculator between the ages of 9 and 17 months. The analysis showed that the average serum testosterone levels ranged from 1.83 to 13.28 ng/mL and significantly depended on the age of the lambs (P < 0.05). The trend in the level of serum testosterone was characterized by pronounced variability throughout the study period. Changes in scrotal circumference and body weight were significantly dependent on age. Ejaculate volume, sperm motility, and the percentage of live spermatozoa increased with age, except for the percentage of abnormal spermatozoa, which decreased with age. Correlations among serum testosterone, scrotal circumference, and body weight were moderately to highly positive and highly significant. All parameters of semen quality were poorly correlated with testosterone and body weight, while scrotal circumference was in moderate correlation only with ejaculate volume and live sperm count (P < 0.05).
Keywords: Testosterone, scrotal circumference, sperm, maturation, male lambs
Full Text: PDF