Sexual behavior and seminal quality of Piau boars

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Abstract

The objective of this study was to assess parameters of sexual behavior, seminal characteristics, testicular measurements, and their correlations in Piau boars. A total of 169 observations of the sexual behavior and prelude duration (courting) of 10 Piau boars aged from 0.8 to 6.4 years were made; semen was also collected from these animals. The testicular length (TL), testicular width (TW), testicular shape (TS; 1-5), and testicular volume (TV) of these animals were measured. The seminal physical and morphological characteristics of 60 ejaculates from 6 boars were assessed for volume of ejaculate (VOL), volume of the gelatinous portion (VOLGEL), aspect (ASP), sperm motility (MOT), spermatic vigor (VIG), spermatic concentration per milliliter (CONCML), total concentration (CONCT), and morphological characteristics (major defects [MAJDEF]; minor defects [MINDEF]; and total defects [TDEF]). The animals were subdivided into 3 age groups: G1 (0.8-2.0 years old), G2 (2.1-3.6 years old), and G3 (3.7 and 6.4 years olds). The physiological signs observed included duration of prelude (12.1 ± 4.1 minutes), time to collect semen (5.2 ± 1.8 minutes), nasonasal or genital contact behavior (71.6%), saliva emission (85.2%), urination during prelude (10.1%), penile exposure before collection (26.6%), flank stimulus (81.7%), chewing behavior (95.3%), and biting of the female or dummy (74.6%). The mean values of TL, TW, and TV were 11.8 ± 2.2 cm, 6.2 ± 1.3 cm and 754.1 ± 283.5 cm3, respectively. The older animals had the highest mean values of testicular measurements (P < 0.05) but the lowest mean values of CONCML and CONCT (P < 0.05). All the animals presented similar patterns of ejaculates (P > 0.05); the mean values of VOL, VOLGEL, MOT, VIG, and CONCT were 149.1 ± 51.1 mL, 29.7 ± 10.0 g, 76.2% ± 9.5%, 3.3 ± 0.5, and 29.4 ± 19.5 × 109 total sperm in the ejaculate, respectively. The prevalence rates of defects were 5.9% ± 2.6% for MAJDEF, 10.2% ± 4.0% for MINDEF, and 16.2% ± 5.5% for TDEF; all animals were classified as being sound for breeding. The assessed characteristics were similar to those observed in swine of commercial lineages and within the standards established by the Brazilian College of Animal Reproduction for the species.

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