Selection for fertility in merino mutton and merino long wool sheep 3. correlations between breeding values for fertility and wool performance in ai in waiting rams

Schmalwasser, T.; Koenig, K.H.

Archiv fuer Tierzucht 34(5): 417-422


Accession: 007776367

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Studies were made involving 196 Merino mutton and Merino long wool rams and their tested progeny to determine the correlations between wool performance and fertility. The tested parameters were staple length, wool quality, grease wool yield, net wool yield, lambing rate and number of lambs born per 100 ewes. In Merino mutton sheep a loose negative correlation was found between the two parameter complexes, whereas in Merino long wool sheep the breeding values for both performance complexes vary independently of each other. The loose correlations between wool yield and fertility and the missing correlations between fertility and wool quality allow genetic improvement in both performance complexes, provided the traits are included into selection and adequately ranked. This is particularly important for selection of AI in-waiting rams.