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Title: Genetic parameters for yearling wool production, wool quality and bodyweight traits in fine wool Merino sheep
Contributor(s): Swan, Andrew  (author); Purvis, Ian W (author); Piper, L R (author)
Publication Date: 2008
DOI: 10.1071/EA07425
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Abstract: Genetic parameters were estimated for traits measured in the first year of production in a multi-bloodline flock of fine wool Merino sheep. Between 5025 and 9271 animals were measured, depending on the trait, and these animals were the progeny of up to 430 sires. Heritability estimates for fleece weight traits ranged from 0.37 to 0.49, while estimates for five wool quality traits ranged from 0.34 for staple strength to 0.66 for mean fibre diameter. For bodyweight, the heritability estimated at weaning was 0.20, and at the yearling age was 0.51. Maternal genetic effects were significant for fleece weight and bodyweight traits and were highly correlated between these trait groups, indicating that these effects are determined by similar groups of genes in both trait groups. While most genetic correlation estimates were either favourable or neutral, there were economically antagonistic correlations between fleece weight and mean fibre diameter, ranging from 0.15 to 0.30, and between mean fibre diameter and staple strength (0.26). Overall, the heritabilities and genetic correlations estimated in this fine wool population were similar to estimates from other strains, indicating that outcomes from selection programs will be similar across strains and that fine wool sheep can be included in across flock genetic evaluations with other strains.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture, 48(9), p. 1168-1176
Publisher: CSIRO Publishing
Place of Publication: Collingwood, Victoria, Australia
ISSN: 1836-0939
Field of Research (FOR): 070201 Animal Breeding
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 830311 Sheep - Wool
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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Appears in Collections:Animal Genetics and Breeding Unit (AGBU)
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