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Perceptions and knowledge of measurement in selection programs: A survey of stud merino breeders in Australia


Butler, LG and Corkrey, SR and Knox, IJ and Hannan, G and Thompson, RP, Perceptions and knowledge of measurement in selection programs: A survey of stud merino breeders in Australia, Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture, 35, (6) pp. 681-692. ISSN 0816-1089 (1995) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 1995 CSIRO

DOI: doi:10.1071/EA9950681


A total of 329 (25%) stud Merino breeders returned a survey designed to evaluate their knowledge of, and attitudes to, objective measurement in sheep breeding and performance recording. The data were analysed by log-linear regression techniques. There was overwhelming agreement that performance records were not as valid as traditional methods, but there was general agreement that measurement improves accuracy of selection, increases genetic gain, assists ram buyers and breeders, and increases flock earnings. There is a significant concern regarding the accuracy of fleece tests. Most respondents (60%) intend to increase their use of measurement, although the common attitude was that measurement only gives back-up to visual assessment. Some answers demonstrated a lack of understanding of the principles of applying measurement. There appears to be a difference between breeders and those more closely involved with technical genetics in interpretation of the term 'breeding objective'. Department of Agriculture Officers and Stock Agents rated poorly as sources of information. Rural newspapers and magazines are confirmed as useful media for awareness. It was concluded that a number of barriers to adoption of objective measurement and performance recording need to be overcome, including suspicion about the accuracy of the fleece tests, and the ram age at which testing can be conducted with confidence.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:stud breeders, performance recording
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Animal production
Research Field:Animal management
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Livestock raising
Objective Field:Sheep for wool
UTAS Author:Corkrey, SR (Dr Ross Corkrey)
ID Code:39581
Year Published:1995
Web of Science® Times Cited:4
Deposited By:Agricultural Science
Deposited On:2006-06-08
Last Modified:2015-04-01

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