Turkish Journal of Veterinary & Animal Sciences




The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of beta-carotene added in the diets of New Zealand rabbits on the ovulation, fertilization ratio, LH and progesterone levels. Forty female and 4 male adult New Zealand rabbits were used. Female rabbits were divided into 2 groups consisting of 20 each. Group I consisted of experimental rabbits while Group II was kept as the control. Animals in the experimental and control groups were kept in separate cages but in the same husbandry conditions. For the animals in the experimental group, 2.8 mg/kg of synthetic beta-carotene was added into the diet for a month. The female adults in the control group were fed a normal diet. At the end of month, male rabbits were deliberately placed in cages with females for mating. Blood samples were taken from all female rabbits every 6 hours for 2 days after mating and the level of LH was measured in all samples. Blood was also taken at 4 day intervals for 30 days and the progesterone levels were measured. All females (in Groups I and II) were laparotomized 2 weeks after mating and the ovarial corpora lutea and fetuses were counted. The LH levels in Groups I and II were statistically analysed and no difference was found between 0, 12, 18, 24, 30, 36, 42 and 48 hours, but the difference between Groups I and II at 6 hours was statistically significant (p


beta-carotene, fertility, rabbit, progesterone concentration

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