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Impact of Salt Intake on Red and Fallow Deer Production in Australia - Review -

  • Ru, Y.J. (South Australian Research and Development Institute, Livestock Systems, Roseworthy Campus Roseworthy) ;
  • Glatz, P.C. (South Australian Research and Development Institute, Livestock Systems, Roseworthy Campus Roseworthy) ;
  • Miao, Z.H. (South Australian Research and Development Institute, Livestock Systems, Roseworthy Campus Roseworthy)
  • Published : 2000.12.01

Abstract

Southern and south-western Australia is a typical mediterranean environment, characterised by wet, cold winters and dry, hot summers. The evaporation rate varies significantly in summer, resulting in a high salinity of drinking water for grazing animals. In addition, a large amount of land in the cropping areas is affected by salt. Puccinellia, tall wheat grass and saltbushes have been planted to improve the soil condition and to supply feed for grazing animals. Animals grazing these areas often ingest an excessive amount of salt from soil, forage and drinking water which can reduce feed intake, increase the water requirement, depress growth and affect body composition as demonstrated in sheep. While the deer industry has been successfully developed in these regions, the potential impact of excessive salt intake on deer production is unknown. The salt tolerance has been well defined for sheep, cattle and other livestock species, but the variation between animal species, breeds within species, maturity status and grazing environments makes it impossible to apply these values directly to deer. To optimise deer production and effectively use natural resources, it is essential to understand the salt status of grazing deer and the impact of excessive salt intake on growth and reproduction of deer.

Keywords

Salt Tolerance;Pasture;Grazing Deer

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