G.P. Vicovan

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RESEARCHES REGARDING THE STRUCTURAL FEATURES OF THE MUTTON'S LEG, IN COMPARISON TO THE LOCAL SHEEP BREEDS AND THEIR HALF-BREEDS WITH MEAT BREEDS FROM E.U.

G.P. Vicovan, Adriana Vicovan, R. Radu, A. Ida, Ana Enciu

Abstract
The purpose of researches was that to emphasize the structure features of the mutton's leg at the local sheep breeds and certain half-breeds with meat breeds from E.U. The research developed during 2006-2011 on 95 mutton's legs from the local sheep breeds (Meat Breed - Palas, Palas Merino, Ţigaia, Ţurcana) and the half-breeds F1 Meat Breed x Texel, Suffolk x Merino, German with Black Head x Ţigaia and German with Black Head x Ţurcana. The mutton's legs were dissected separating the muscles, the bones and the fat (of covering and inter-muscular). The muscles, the bones and the fat were weighted with a precision of ± 5 g. The coxal, the sacrum, the femur and the tibia, and also their groups of muscles were also measured and weighted. Two indicators of the mutton's leg were calculated (the indicator of compactness and the indicator of muscularity of the thigh) after the formula presented by Laville E [1]. The Meat Breed - Palas and its half-breeds with Texel had the most compact mutton's legs with the best muscle/bones (4.3/1-4.5/1) and muscles/fat (7.0/1-7.6/1) proportions in the mutton's leg. Ţigaia breed and their half- breeds had the smallest muscles/fat proportions (3.6/1-3.7/1), due to the excessive deposit of fat. Ţurcana breed and theirs half-breeds with the German breed with Black Head had the smallest muscles/bones (3.2/1-3.3/1) proportions due to the very heavy skeleton. The made researches emphasizes the fact that all local sheep breeds (except Meat Breed - Palas) have a very heavy skeleton, maybe due to a high density of the bone tissue, due to the lack of selection for increasing and improving the meat production (tens of generations).

Key words: mutton's leg, tissue structure, muscle /bones proportion