On-farm reproductive performance of the West African Dwarf goat at Ganawuri in the sub-humid zone of Nigeria.
32 herds of West African Dwarf goats (4-20 goats/herd) raised under village conditions grazing stylosanthes (Stylosanthes hamata) or natural pasture in the wet season were studied for 30 months to determine herd productivity. Average litter size was 1.67±0.082, kidding interval 250±12.0 days, and age at 1st kidding 471±18.0 days. Birth weight was affected by year and season of birth (P<0.01). Male kids were heavier than females, 2nd and 3rd parity lambs were heavier than 1st and 4th parity kids, and singles were heavier than multiples (P<0.05). Growth rate decreased with age and was affected (P<0.01) by season. Litter size was higher after 4 parities (P<0.05). The cumulative mortality to 1 year of age was 14.5% and accounted for about 50% of all deaths; it was highest in the kids born during the wet season (P<0.01). Postpartum weight at 1st parity was lower (P<0.01) than at subsequent parities and does that gave birth to single kids were lighter post partum than those that had multiple births (P<0.01).