Factors affecting the development of laryngeal chondritis in sheep.
Edmunds, J. L.
Roden, J. A.
Finch, J. M.
McEwan, Neil R.
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EDMUNDS, J.L., RODEN, J.A., FINCH., J.M. and MCEWAN, N.R. 2017. Factors affecting the development of laryngeal chondritis in sheep. Large animal review [online], 23(6), pages 219-222. Available from: https://cms.sivarnet.it/it/lar
Historic data (from 2005 to 2011) were collected and analysed from four flocks of pedigree Texel sheep in Ceredigion, West Wales and were used to investigate a range of factors associated with death due to laryngeal chondritis (n=82) relative to all animals (n=2826) removed from the flocks, either due to death from other causes or as part of routine animal husbandry (e.g. sale of livestock to other farms, or for meat). Deaths from laryngeal chondritis were observed in both sexes, but males had a higher incidence, particularly early in life. Cases were reported throughout the year, with examples observed in all months of the year, although there was a pattern of seasonal variation associated with age/sex of affected animals. Generally males tended to be affected throughout the year, with little variation in numbers on a month-to-month basis, whilst females were more likely to be affected either later in the year around the time coinciding with puberty (in the case of ewe lambs) or in the second quarter of the year, shortly after weaning (in the case of adult ewes). Animals with laryngeal chondritis had a heavier ultrasound scanning weight at around 20 weeks, although the weight of animals at other times had no effect. It was also noted that the depth of muscle and fat depth at 20 weeks had no effect on susceptibility. Maternal and/or nursing effects were observed. Ewes with affected lambs had a statistically higher mean pre-tupping body condition score than the others ewes in the flock, meaning that there may be some form of epigenetic role played in predisposing an animal to developing the condition later in life. The number of littermates had no effect, with no significant difference between those born as singletons, twins or triplets. However the rearing status of animals did have an effect, with animals reared as singletons having a higher incidence rate than those reared as pairs.