Effect of selection on the body fat content of rabbits by means of the TOBEC method on the body composition and slaughter traits of their offspring
The aim of this study was to clarify’ the usefulness of TOBEC method in the selection of body fat content of the rabbits. For this purpose rabbits of average ±1 S.D. live weight at 10 weeks and of average ±1 S.D. daily weight gain between 6 and 10 weeks of age were chosen from the experimental stock of the university, and their fat content was determined with an EM-SCAN SA-3152 type small animal body composition analyser (by means of TOBEC method). Based on the fat content determined the best and worst 16% of the does and the best and worst 8% of the bucks were chosen and mated with each other (fatty doe with fatty buck and lean doe with lean buck). In the body fat content of the offspring significant differences were observed at 10 weeks of age (9.7 in the fatty and 7.1 in the non-fatty rabbits). Next to the fat content also the liver (3.0 and 2.1%) and other edible organs (2.3 and 1.8%) showed higher values in the offspring of fatty rabbits. In spite of these a higher ratio of the carcass was observed in the non-fatty animals (49.8 and 52.3%, respectively). Due to the higher ratio of the carcass, the protein content of the body was also higher in these rabbits (18.7 and 19.3%). Based on the results, the TOBEC method for the selection of rabbits based on their body fat content seems to be useful.