Seasonal differences in semen characteristics and sperm functionality in Tankwa goats
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Tankwa goats have been free-ranging in the Tankwa Karoo National Park in the Northern Cape for more than 80 years. A genetic study concluded that these feral goats are a unique genetic resource compared to other goat breeds in South Africa and should be conserved as a distinctive population. A decision taken by the South African National Parks who is the managing authority in the park, was to remove all alien species, which included the Tankwa goats. Several animals were translocated to the Carnarvon Research Station by the Northern Cape Department of Agriculture, Land Reform & Rural Development, where the Tankwa goat population has grown to a few hundred individuals. Currently, sound scientific decisions including the application of a wide range of technologies and approaches are applied to conserve the population, such as an informed understanding of the reproductive biology of these goats. The aim of this study was to define sperm quality in Tankwa goats using various macroscopic and microscopic evaluation techniques.