The influence of preweaning growth rate on postweaning growth and carcass grading characteristics was investigated in two experiments with lambs at pasture. Differences in preweaning growth rate due to within mob variation, feed allowance treatments or rearing rank had small or no effects on postweaning growth when lambs were offered the same pasture allowance per unit of liveweight or per head after weaning. Therefore lambs with slower preweaning growth rates had lighter carcasses at a common age (P<0.01) or were older at a common weight (P<0.05). Carcass GR measurements were not significantly influenced by preweaning growth rates when compared at the same carcass weight and slaughter date. An increase in weight-adjusted GR measurements was observed over autumn.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 50, , 249-254, 1990
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