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Asian Journal of Poultry Science
Year: 2015  |  Volume: 9  |  Issue: 4  |  Page No.: 191 - 202

Behavioral Activities, Physiological Body Reactions, Hematological Parameters and Hormonal Profiles for Bucks of New Zealand White and Baladi Red Rabbits Exposed to Short Term of High Temperature

Hassan A. Khalil, Mohamed A. Yaseen and Akrum M.M. Hamdy    

Abstract: This study was conducted to investigate the effect of acute short term heat exposure on behavioral activities, physiological body reactions, hematological parameters and hormonal profiles of New Zealand White (NZW) and Baladi Red (BR) bucks. Twenty male NZW and BR bucks were divided into two groups; natural winter climate of 19±1°C and 55±5%, Relative Humidity (RH) (control group) and the bucks in the other group were exposed to short term heat stress for 1 h at 37±0.5°C and 20±2% RH. The results indicated that, heat stress decreased (p≤0.001) standing and walking behavior and increased (p≤0.001) sitting behavior compared with these recorded under control temperature. Moreover, Respiration Rate (RR), Rectal Temperatures (RT) and Time of Sexual Libido (TSL) were significantly increased (p≤0.001) following stress. Concentration of plasma testosterone and T3 were significantly reduced (p≤0.001) and cortisol were significantly increased after submission to stress. The RBCs, WBCs, Hb, PCV values were insignificantly reduced and lymphocyte was significantly reduced after stress. In contrast, neutrophils, Neutrophils/Lymphocytes (N/L) ratio were increased (p≤0.05) and monocytes were insignificantly increased after the end of heat stress. On the other hand, breeds of rabbit had significant effects on most of the studied traits, especially after heat exposure. The BR bucks were significantly superior; RBCs, WBCs, neutrophils, N/L ratio and monocytes than those recorded in NZW bucks after heat stress. Also, plasma concentration of testosterone were significantly higher but cortisol and T3 were significantly lower (p≤0.05) in BR bucks than those estimated in NZW bucks. Moreover, BR bucks had insignificantly higher walking and lower standing behavior than those recorded in NZW bucks. Also, RR was significantly higher (p≤0.001), but RT and TSL were significantly lower (p≤0.001) in BR bucks than those recorded in the NZW bucks. Furthermore, the results showed that there were prevalent significant (p≤0.05) negative correlation between plasma level of cortisol and each of plasma level of testosterone, RBCs, WBCs counts, standing and walking behavior and significant (p≤0.001) positive with RR, RT, TSL and time of sitting behavior. Current results explained that acute short term heat stress, negatively affected of internal environment of rabbit bucks which were reflected in their performance. Also, behavioral traits, sexual libido, hematological parameters and hormonal profile in BR bucks seem to be better than those recorded by NZW bucks after exposed heat stress, which may be explained, why BR breed had more tolerate to heat stress compared to exotic breeds.

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