Effects of space allowance during transport and duration of mid-journey lairage period on the physiological, behavioural and immunological responses of young calves during and after transport

P N Grigor, M S Cockram, W B Steele, C J Le Sueur, R E Forsyth, J A Guthrie, A K Johnson, V Sandilands, H W Reid, C Sinclair, H K Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The effects of space allowance during transportation and duration of a mid journey lairage period on measurements of stress, injury, dehydration, food restriction and rest in young calves were assessed during and after transport. Groups of calves were transported for two 9-h journeys (at a space allowance of either 0.375 or 0.475 m(2) per calf) separated by a mid-journey lairage period of either 1 or 22 h. Non-transported calves were offered milk replacer and drinking water either at the usual times or only at the same times as the transported calves.

During transport, transported calves spent significantly less time lying down and had a greater plasma cortisol concentration than control calves. Under the driving conditions used, increased space allowance was not associated with greater injury or loss of stability. The duration of the mid journey lairage was not an important factor; the shorter lairage time, giving the calves sufficient time to receive milk replacer but little opportunity to rest, had no major detrimental effects on the variables used to assess welfare. Although there was little evidence that transport affected immunological variables, there was some evidence that it adversely affected the health of the calves post transport.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-360
Number of pages20
JournalAnimal science
Volume73
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2001

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Effects of space allowance during transport and duration of mid-journey lairage period on the physiological, behavioural and immunological responses of young calves during and after transport'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this