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International Journal of Biometeorology

, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp 5–30 | Cite as

Heat tolerance in cattle-its concept, measurement and dependence on modifying factors

  • W. Bianca
Article

Abstract

Heat tolerance is a complex phenomenon. Its study involves three factors: the thermal environment, the animal body and a suitable scale for expressing numerically the effect of the thermal environment on the animal body.

Since each of the principal component elements of a thermal environment, temperature, humidity, solar radiation and wind, makes specific demands on thermoregulation,it is desirable in a heat tolerance test to consider all of them. The total heat load imposed on an animal should be large enough to evoke a pronounced response, but not so large as to cause damage.

Various morphological characters auch as the texture and the colour of the hair coat may have prognostic value, in that they allow a certain prediction to be made of a young animal's future heat tolerance. This is of practical importance for the breeder. Among the many physiological variables body temperature is considered the best single criterion of heat tolerance. Productive performance as an indicator to heat tolerance seems to be more useful in beef cattle than in dairy cattle.

From a description of the various methods which have been used for assessing heat tolerance, it is concluded that none of them is entirely satisfactory and that there is a need for an improved method.

An animal's capacity for tolerating heat is influenced by a number of modifying factors the nost important of which are age, nutrition, physical activity,reproduction, level of production, acclimatization, management, state of health and emotional balance. Unless these factors are taken into consideration,heat tolerance tests will give misleading results.

Keywords

Thermal Environment Heat Tolerance Parmi Hair Coat Total Heat Load 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Abstrakt

Hitzetoleranz ist eine komplexe Grösse.Für ihr Studium müssen drei Faktoren berücksichtigt werden: die thermische Umwelt, der tierische Organismus und ein geeigneter Masstab, der die Einwirkung der thermischen Umwelt auf den tierischen Organismus zahlenmässig zum Ausdruck bringt.

Da jedes der vier Hauptelemente einer thermischen Umwelt, nämlich Temperatur, Feuchtigkeit, Sonnenstrahlung und Wind spezifische Anforderungen an die Temperaturregelung des Körpers stellt, ist es wünschenswert,dass alle diese Elemente in einem Hitzetoleranz Test Berücksichtigung finden. Die gesamte Wärmebelastung, der ein Tier in einem Hitzetoleranz Test ausgesetzt wird, soll grosz genug sein um deutliche Reaktionen hervorzurufen, aber nicht so grosz, dass das Tier Schaden nimmt.

Verschiedene morphologische Merkmale wie z.B. die Beschaffenheit des Haarkleides können prognostische Bedeutung besitzen; d.h. sie können eine gewisse Voraussage der zukünftigen Hitzetoleranz eines jungen Tieres gestatten.Dies ist für den Tierzüchter von praktischer Bedeutung. Unter den zahlreichen physiologischen Grössen,die zur Beurteilung der Hitzetoleranz herangezogen werden können,ist die Körpertemperatur das beste Einzelkriterium. Unter den Nutzleistungen scheint das Körperwachstum geeigneter zu sein als die Milchproduktion.

Aus einer Beschreibung der verschiedenen Methoden, die als Bewertungsmasstäbe für die Hitzetoleranz verwendet werden, wird gefolgert,dass keine dieser Methoden vollständig befriedigt. Eine geeignetere Methode muss entwickelt werden.

Die Fähigket eines Tieres Hitze zu ertragen wird durch eine Anzahl modifizierender Faktoren beeinflusst. Die wichtigsten sind: Alter, Ernährung, Körperbewegung, Geschlechtsfunktionen, Nutzleistung, Akklimatisation, Haltung, Gesundheitszustand und emotionelles Gleichgewicht. Werden diese Factoren in einem Hitzetoleranz Test nich berücksichtigt, so entstehen irreführende Resultate.

Résumé

La tolérance à la chaleur est une notion complexe.Trois facteurs doivent Être considérés dans son étude: le milieu thermique, l'organisme animal et une unité de mesure capable d'exprimer quantitativement l'influence du milieu thermique sur l'organisme animal.

Un test de tolérance à la chaleur devrait tenir compte des quatre facteurs principaux du milieu thermique: la température, l'humidité, le rayonnement solaire et le vent, car chacun d'eux influence spécifiquement les mécanismes de régulation thermique du corps.La quantité totale de chaleur fournie à un animal au cours d'un test doit Être suffisante pour déclencher des réactions nettes sans causer de troubles pathologiques.

Divers caractères morphologiques, comme par exemple l'état du système pileux, peuvent fournir une indication sur la résistance future à la chaleur d'un jeune animal;ceci présente une utilité pratique pour l'éleveur. Parmi les nombreuses mesures physiologiques qui peuvent servir à l'appréciation d'un test de tolérance à la chaleur, la température corporelle est le meilleur critère. Parmi les fonctions physiologiques,l'augmentation du poids du corps semble un critère plus utile que la production de lait.

L'examen des différentes méthodes utilisées pour évaluer la tolérance à la chaleur montre qu'aucunes d'elles n'est tout à fait satisfaisante. Une méthode plus appropriée doit Être créée.

La résistance à la chaleur d'un jeune animal est influencée par une quantité de facteurs. Les plus importants sont l'âge, la nutrition, les mouvements, les fonctions sexuelles, le travail utile, l'acclimatation, la posture, l'état de santé et l'équilibre affectif. Les résultats d'un test de résistance à la chaleur qui ne tiendrait pas compte de ces facteurs sont douteux.

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Copyright information

© Swets & Zeitlinger B.V. 1961

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. Bianca
    • 1
  1. 1.The Hannah Dairy Research InstituteKirkhill

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