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Production of suckling lambs of Segureña and Montesina breeds in the Region of Murcia. Influence of breed and season on carcass and meat quality

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Authors: María Dolores Barceló, Luis Tejada, Laura Almela y Begoña Peinado
Issue: 117-3 (262-277)
Topic: Animal Production
Keywords: native breeds, Montesina, Segureña, suckling lamb, color, fat cover

In the Spanish Region of Murcia, there are two native sheep breeds, named as Segureña and Montesina, respectively. The two breeds produce light lambs in areas with high seasonality of pasture and high production costs. Moreover, Montesina breed is at risk of extinction. For this reason, it appears necessary to search different ways of diversification of their production, i.e., by adding a product of high added value, such as suckling lamb.
The goal of this study was to evaluate the quality of Segureña and Montesina suckling lambs, at different seasons, with particular attention on the quality of carcass and meat.
Twenty-four Segureña suckling lambs and 30 Montesina suckling lambs, single-born males and females, were used. Animals were grouped into two batches according to the breeding season: spring and autumn. The animals were exclusively fed with breastfeeding until they reached 10‑16 kg of body weight. After sacrifice, we performed the analysis and measurements needed for calculation of standardized parameters of carcass and meat quality in this species.
Overall, parameters of carcass-and-technological-meat quality showed adequate levels for both Segureña and Montesina suckling lambs. The statistical analysis showed a strong influence of breeding season in most of the quality parameters analyzed. The breed only marked significant differences in the fat state of the carcass (p = 0.01) and renal fat (p < 0.001), showing the Montesina breed the highest values.
In conclusion, the Segureña and Montesina suckling lambs give carcass and technological meat characteristics of good quality. These results lead us to propose their production into farms in the Region of Murcia, in order to improve their economic viability.


Barceló MD, Tejada L, Almela L, Peinado B (2021). Producción de corderos lechales de raza Segureña y Montesina en la Región de Murcia. Influencia de la raza y la estación del año en la calidad de la canal y la carne. ITEA‑Información Técnica Económica Agraria 117(3): 262-277.

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