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Twenty-three purebred Alpine (n=8), Saanen (n=7) and Damascus (n=8) goat bucks raised at the Institute of Reproduction and Artificial Insemination in Thessaloniki, Greece (40 degrees 37 minutes N, 22 degrees 58 minutes E and altitude 32 m above sea level), were used to study the effect of photoperiod on semen production. Samples were collected with an artificial vagina and examined immediately after collection. In spite of the variation in nearly all semen characteristics studied among the 3 breeds of bucks, there was significant seasonal variation in both semen quantity (volume, concentration and total number of spermatozoa per ejaculate) and quality (percentage of motile spermatozoa, percentage of abnormal spermatozoa and rate of progressive motility). The best semen was produced during the breeding season (late summer and autumn). However, the magnitude of these seasonal effects was not sufficient to prevent bucks from being used for breeding throughout the year. Nevertheless, individual differences in the semen quantity and quality among bucks within a breed make individual evaluation of semen necessary to select the most fertile males for breeding.


A Karagiannidis, S Varsakeli, G Karatzas. Characteristics and seasonal variations in the semen of Alpine, Saanen and Damascus goat bucks born and raised in Greece. Theriogenology. 2000 Apr 1;53(6):1285-93

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PMID: 10832753

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