Research Article Open Access

Growth Traits as Indicators of Body Weights in Dorper Sheep

Molabe Kagisho Madikadike1, Vusi Mbazima2, Busisiwe Gunya1 and Thobela Louis Tyasi1
  • 1 Department of Agricultural Economics and Animal Production, University of Limpopo, South Africa
  • 2 Department of Biochemistry Microbiology and Biotechnology, University of Limpopo, South Africa


The growth traits help rural farmers who lack weighing equipment to anticipate the body weights of their animals for a variety of reasons, including feeding, medication, and breeding purposes. The study aims to predict body weights from the growth traits of Doper sheep. Data on growth traits such as body length, heart girth, sternum height, withers height, rump height, and body weight were collected for one day from 50 Dorper sheep aged 1 to 2 years. Pearson's correlation and simple linear regression analysis were used to achieve the study's objectives. Pearson’s correlation results in ewes indicated that body weights had a positive significant relationship with heart girth, wither height, and body length. Whereas in rams, body weights showed to be positively and statistically correlated to withers and sternum height. Simple linear regression demonstrated the highest coefficient with the lowest mean square error on heart girth in ewes and sternum and withers height in rams. Correlations suggest that increasing heart girth, withers height, and body length in ewes and withers and sternum height in rams might cause body weights to increase. The regression analysis in ewes revealed that heart girth contributes 27% of the variation in body weights, whereas sternum or withers height contributes 61% of the variation in rams. In conclusion, to improve body weights, ewes' heart girth, withers height, body length, and rams' withers and sternum heights and heart girth, may be selected.

American Journal of Animal and Veterinary Sciences
Volume 17 No. 4, 2022, 332-338


Submitted On: 29 July 2022 Published On: 26 December 2022

How to Cite: Madikadike, M. K., Mbazima, V., Gunya, B. & Tyasi, T. L. (2022). Growth Traits as Indicators of Body Weights in Dorper Sheep. American Journal of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, 17(4), 332-338.

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  • Body Length
  • Heart Girth
  • Sternum Height
  • Withers Height