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Assessment of Demographic, Geographical and Genetic Risks in Markhoz Goat Population

DOI: 10.3923/javaa.2011.162.168

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Abstract:

Decline of native area, population size and breeding herds are indicators of imminent danger of breed extinction in the near future. Because of occurrence and continuation of these conditions for Markhoz goat population, this research was conducted to determine its spread, latest demographic data and the most important criteria and degree of endangerment. Data were collected through interview with the herders and monitoring the flocks in their native area and other locations in mating season. Distribution map was prepared using GIS and demographic data were used to evaluate Degree of Endangerment (DE). In the latest year, population size, the number of breeding females and males, effective population size and inbreeding rate were 2456, 1332, 70, 266 heads and 0.19% in each generation, respectively. Except for inbreeding rate, other criteria in 2009 were lower than those in 2008. In this study, herders mentioned economic factors as the main reason for decreasing of the population. Investigation of criteria in four major evaluation systems to determine DE showed that Markhoz goat is in demographic and geographical risks and imminent danger of decreasing variation within breed. Intense concentration of 77% of its population within a circle of 7 km radius has exposed the breed at the risk of epidemic diseases and other natural disasters. Thus, the primary conservational measures by the government as well as complimentary studies for providing comprehensive conservation program appear to be necessary.

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