Investigation of the Live Weight, Body Measurements and Fiber Diameter of the Deutsches Merinofleischschaf and Karacabey Merino Sheep Using Cluster Analysis


Abstract: As regards fiber diameter quality and yields, Turkish Merinos have proven successful. They have better fertility and meat yields than native species bred in Turkey. It is of significance to know the similarity degree between Turkish Merinos and Deutsches Merinofleischschaf. Various methods of statistical analysis may be employed to determine the similarity degree between related species. One of the methods to be employed is cluster analysis. In this study, the live weight, body measurements and fiber diameter of these two genotypes were determined by cluster analysis. The hierarchical clustering and SLINK techniques and Euclidean distance method were used for clustering. The dendogram graphics based on cluster analysis show that there is a remarkable similarity in body measurements between these two genotypes. The similarity also shows that Deutsches Merinofleischschaf and Karacabey Merino are genetically close. In both groups, the studied subjects of ages 1.5-2.5 in the sub-groups are heterogeneous, whereas, the sub-groups consisting of ages 3.5, 4.5 and 5.5 ages are homogeneous. Evaluated together, 98.9% of the Merino sheep are clustered in one group. These findings show that Karacabey Merino genotypes bear the characteristics of their ancestor, Deutsches Merinofleischschaf, and they also show that there is no remarkable difference between these two genotypes in terms of body measurements. It may be concluded that Karacabey Merinos have sustained adaptability to the conditions in Turkey since they were bred, and bear almost the same characteristics as pure Deutsches Merinofleischschaf.

Keywords: Sheep, Body measurements, Live weight, Fiber diameter, Cluster analysis

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