Genetic parameters for reproduction and fleece traits for South Australian Merino sheep

Ingham, V.M.; Ponzoni, R.W.

Proceedings of the 7th World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Montpellier, France, August, 2002 Session 12: 0-4


Accession: 003783658

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Phenotypic and genetic correlations between number of lambs weaned per ewe joined (NLW), clean fleece weight (CFW), and fibre diameter (FD), were estimated using REML. Data used were from the Turretfield Merino Resource Flock in South Australia. Different models were fitted to determine the effect of adjusting fleece records for lambing status. Phenotypic correlations were close to zero for all combinations of NLW, CFW, and FD. Adjusting for lambing status reduced them further. Genetic correlations were low and negative between NLW and CFW, and decreased as age increased. Genetic correlations between NLW and FD were low and positive and changed little with age. Adjusting for lambing status generally decreased the estimates. Results did not agree with assumed parameters in genetic evaluation services. It is suggested that selection for CFW or FD could be detrimental to NLW.