CRITERIA OF AGE AND SEX OF CATTLE OF DAIRY DIRECTION ON MORPHOLOGICAL FEATURES OF SKULL
The article is devoted to the study of the morphological features of the skull of dairy cattle depending on the sex in a wide age range (from birth to 10 years) at the different levels ofstructural organization. It has been established that the assessment of the informative quantitative parameters of the skull (craniometric, roentgenodensitometric, spectral) and the formalization of its qualitative characteristics (cranioscopic, roentgenomorpho- logical) allows to determine the age of the cattle comprehensively, objectively and trustworthy on the basis of the reference-test principle. The latter one is the basis for the computer program "Cattle Skull", which automatizes the developed methods of cattle age and sex determination by the skull and eliminates the errors during the processing of the research results, it improves the accuracy and objectivity of the craniological examinations. According to the results of the multifactorial dispersion analysis, to determine the age and sex of the cattle is influence: according to linear craniometric indices - the age of the animals (81-100 %), sex (0-17 %) and random factors (0-6 %); according to the results of IR-spectroscopic research - random factors (49-59 %), age (36-50 %) and sex (1-4 %); by Hounsfield parameter (HU) - age (82-96 %), sex - (1-16 %) and random factors (0-2 %); according to computer tomographic and densitometric indices (CTDI) values - age (5-82 %), sex (2-89 %) and random factors (6-51 %). Osteological technology, in the basis of which there is laid consideration of the integrity of the skull, the quantity and complexity of applied methods of skull research, allows to determine the age of the dairy cattle by the qualitative and quantitative parameters of the skull from birth to the age of 10 years with an accuracy of 2-10 months.
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