Environmental conditions causing selenium deficiency in sheep
Chałabis-Mazurek A., Wałkuska G.
The research was carried out on the Experimental Farm in Uhrusk, which belongs to the University of Life Sciences in Lublin. Two-year experiment were conducted in order to assess the influence of environmental conditions on the selenium content in sheep. The investigations included meadows grazed by sheep, from which samples of soils and meadow herbage were obtained for analysis of selenium content. The animal material consisted of 64 lambs and their mothers, whose blood serum was taken for determinations of the selenium content in their organism. The research results showed that the analyzed soils and meadow grasses were characterized by low selenium content. Also, the selenium content in fodder fed to the sheep and lambs was below the animals’ standard demand for this element. The low selenium level found in the sheep’s blood serum distinctly proved a deficiency of this element in their organisms. The results show that environmental conditions have a significant influence on the supply of selenium to adult sheep and their offspring. Selenium deficiency in particular trophic chain links can present a serious threat to the health of animals fed with homegrown fodders.
Chałabis-Mazurek A., Wałkuska G. 2014. Environmental conditions causing selenium deficiency in sheep. J. Elem., 19(1): 55-64, DOI: 10.5601/jelem.2014.19.1.585
selenium, sheep, blood serum, milk, plants, soil