A device to improve the Schleger and Turner method for sweating rate measurements

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The objective of this study was to test a device developed to improve the functionality, accuracy and precision of the original technique for sweating rate measurements proposed by Schleger and Turner [Schleger AV, Turner HG (1965) Aust J Agric Res 16:92-106]. A device was built for this purpose and tested against the original Schleger and Turner technique. Testing was performed by measuring sweating rates in an experiment involving six Mertolenga heifers subjected to four different thermal levels in a climatic chamber. The device exhibited no functional problems and the results obtained with its use were more consistent than with the Schleger and Turner technique. There was no difference in the reproducibility of the two techniques (same accuracy), but measurements performed with the new device had lower repeatability, corresponding to lower variability and, consequently, to higher precision. When utilizing this device, there is no need for physical contact between the operator and the animal to maintain the filter paper discs in position. This has important advantages: the animals stay quieter, and several animals can be evaluated simultaneously. This is a major advantage because it allows more measurements to be taken in a given period of time, increasing the precision of the observations and diminishing the error associated with temporal hiatus (e.g., the solar angle during field studies). The new device has higher functional versatility when taking measurements in large-scale studies (many animals) under field conditions. The results obtained in this study suggest that the technique using the device presented here could represent an advantageous alternative to the original technique described by Schleger and Turner.




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International Journal of Biometeorology. New York: Springer, v. 54, n. 1, p. 37-43, 2010.

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