Growth, fertility, prolificacy and fleece weight of Booroola, Romanov and Finnsheep first cross and backcross with the DLS breed

Fahmy, M.H.

Proceedings of the 4th World Congress on Genetics applied to Livestock Production, Edinburgh 23-27 July 1990 XV Beef cattle, sheep and pig genetics and breeding, fibre, fur and meat quality: 369-372


Accession: 001848764

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The performance of 407 DLS, Romanov X DLS, Finnish Landrace (FL) X DLS and Booroola Merino (BM) X DLS lambs and their backcrosses was analysed. The lambs were born in Feb.-Mar. and mated at 8-9 months of age. Romanov 1st cross and backcross ewe lambs were the heaviest at birth (3.9 and 4.1 kg) followed by BM and FL crossbreds. Romanov crossbreds were also the heaviest at 50, 100 and 365 days of age, followed by FL and BM crossbreds. The fertility of Romanov ewes was 98 and 94% for the 1st cross and backcross groups resp., and was significantly greater than that of crosses with FL ewes (88 and 78%) and BM ewes (51 and 68%) and that of DLS ewes (75%). Litter size was higher in 1st cross Romanov ewes than in 1st cross FL and BM ewes and in DLS ewes; there were similar differences for corresponding backcrosses. Lamb survival was 93-97% at birth and 85-92% between birth and weaning. Litter weight at birth was heaviest in 1st cross Romanov ewes (6.4 kg vs. 5.2-5.8 kg for the other breed types). Litter weight at weaning averaged 25.1 and 23.1 kg for 1st cross and backcross Romanov ewes, greater than that of the other breed types (19.4-21.3 kg). At 1 yr of age, 1st cross and backcross BM ewes produced 3.7 and 3.4 kg of greasy fleece compared with 2.98-3.23 kg for the other crossbreds and 3.3 for the DLS ewes.