Proof of benefits from genetic selection

Introduction

A full copy of the document 'Using ASBVs - What's in it for me?' (A review of the literature on the use of genetic technologies for selection of dams and sires in sheep breeding programs) is available for download below.

The Cooperative Research Centre for Sheep Industry Innovation (Sheep CRC) has established a wide range of initiatives that are facilitating greater uptake of sheep genetic technologies.  This publication is one such initiative.  Its objective is to collate the results from previous research projects and producer demonstrations to build a body of evidence that will allow industry to consider the adoption of breeding values (in particular, Australian Sheep Breeding Values) and associated technologies.  This reference will be extended as more information becomes available.

The projects summarised in this review were identified by the collective knowledge of the Sheep CRC Genetics Training Initiative Steering Committee.  Industry experts located in all states of Australia (see list of acknowledgements) were consulted to identify relevant material.  In addition the Livestock Library (www.livestocklibrary.com.au) and the MLA Producer Initiated Research and Demonstration (PIRD) database have been searched to identify further areas of work.

The benefits of using breeding values and other technologies are often put forward but the proof to support these statements has been scattered far and wide.  This document is a chance to collate all the material, developed over the years, that demonstrates the outcomes from using these technologies.  The review ensures that this very valuable material is not lost and that its collective impact can be appreciated.

This review is comprehensive with projects and demonstrations included regardless of their findings.  Overwhelmingly the combined outcomes from the work reviewed offer a vast and compelling story of considerable benefit from the use of breeding values and associated technologies.   

A number of projects summarised in this review highlight the genetic difference between individual sheep or bloodlines.  These projects have been included to describe the large genetic variation that exists in the sheep industries.  Tools that enable the exploitation of these genetic differences have great value when striving to maximise genetic progress and the future viability of sheep enterprises.

The scope of this review was to collate evidence rather than delve into interpretation of results.  As such, much of the content has been reproduced from cited references.  Collating the evidence has been the highest priority for this work and as a result the format for the material is largely as provided in the references cited.

This review clearly establishes that breeding values and associated technologies deliver genetic progress to the sheep industries.  They are a vital element for sheep enterprises aiming to maximise productivity and profitability.

If you know of any projects/work that could also be included in this document please email info@sheepgenetics.org.au.


DownloadUsing ASBVs - What's in it for me? (6.6 MB)

Practical Wisdom Notes / Fact Sheets

New Opportunities in Genetics and Genomics

PW4.1-01 Genomics and DNA testing: new tools for ram breeders to accelerate genetic gain

Using ASBVs

Products & Training Resources

ASBV Pocket Guide

Australian Sheep Breeding Values - A guide for ram buyers

Marketing your sheep with genetic data

Reports, Articles and Presentations

Getting Started with Sheep Genetics

Sheep CRC Genomics Breakfast Workshop - LambEx 2012

News Releases

Understanding why farmers are pressing the app buttons
Despite the proliferation of new technology in agriculture, very little is known about the effectiveness of these new tools in improving primary productivity and adoption of new practices. A new research project from the Cooperative Research Centre for Sheep Industry Innovation (Sheep CRC) will evaluate the use of smartphone apps in the industry and producer attitudes towards these tools, in order to ensure future tools and... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/understanding-why-farmers-are-pressing-the-app-buttons-22-09-2016.php
Ram team records unlock the secrets to better breeding
Keeping accurate records of his ram teams has allowed South Gippsland second-cross lamb producer Paul O’Sullivan to benchmark his business against industry averages and to refine his genetic selections to take flock productivity to the next level. Mr O’Sullivan was impressed by the benchmarking capabilities of the new RamSelect Plus app when it was launched at LambEx by the Cooperative Research Centre for Sheep Industry... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/ram-team-records-unlock-the-secrets-to-better-breeding-16-09-2016.php
Sheep breeders rush to RamSelect Plus
Sheep breeders are embracing RamSelect Plus in droves, with close to 4000 rams from 60 different studs listed on the site since the start of July. And there are already over twice the number of registered users than there were at the end of the 2015 ram-selling season. Sheep CRC chief executive James Rowe said the early-season figures were a strong endorsement of the need for easy-to-use applications that provide personalised... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/sheep-breeders-rush-to-ramselect-plus-29-08-2016.php
UNE app development team leads the way for the sheep industry
The team behind the popular web-based app RamSelect Plus is already turning its attention to finding new solutions to the data challenges facing the sheep industry. The next project on the cards for the University of New England (UNE) Agile App team is to develop an early intervention sheep management app for the Cooperative Research Centre for Sheep Industry Innovation (Sheep CRC) so that producers can ensure all animals in... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/une-app-development-team-leads-the-way-for-the-sheep-industry-22-08-2016.php
RamSelect Plus adds new precision to genetic selection
Producers at this week’s LambEx event have early access to RamSelect Plus, the latest version of the popular sheep genetic selection app. Cooperative Research Centre for Sheep Industry Innovation (Sheep CRC) CEO James Rowe said RamSelect Plus features more precise genetic selection tools, as well as new benchmarking and ram team management tools. Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/ramselect-plus-adds-new-precision-to-genetic-selection-10-08-2016.php
DNA Flock Profiling delivers sheep breeding insights at Europambela
New England Merino breeder Tony Overton has a much clearer picture of the genetic make-up of his superfine Merino flock and the areas which need attention following trials of a new application for the 15k DNA test designed specifically for commercial producers. Mr Overton, who manages 9000 ewes at ‘Europambela’ in the Walcha district, was a participant in early field trials of the DNA Flock Profiler, being developed by... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/dna-flock-profiling-delivers-sheep-breeding-insights-at-europambela-22-07-2016.php
Got ram team records? Sheep CRC needs you!
Sheep breeders with comprehensive records of their ram teams are being sought by the Sheep CRC as it enters the final stages of development of the latest RamSelect app. The next version of RamSelect will feature enhanced ram searching capabilities to align with estimates of the current genetic merit of a commercial ewe flock, either based on records of the rams used during the previous 10 years, or using data obtained through... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/got-ram-team-records-sheep-crc-needs-you-13-07-2016.php
Sheep DNA tests now quicker and easier
DNA testing of sheep is now quicker and easier than ever, following moves by the Sheep CRC to simplify the process for breeders. From July 1 producers will be able to purchase a stock of blood cards to keep on hand on their properties, allowing them to take blood samples at their convenience, such as at lamb marking, and only submit those they are most interested in for analysis at a later date when they consider their... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/sheep-dna-tests-now-quicker-and-easier-30-06-2016.php
Major upgrade on the way for RamSelect.com.au
Commercial sheep breeders could soon have access to a new DNA test that profiles the average genetic merit of their flock. This new information will increase the precision with which rams can be selected to have the greatest impact on flock performance. The DNA test results will feature in an upgraded RamSelect app, which will also allow breeders to store details of flock rams and their genetic merit in order to make better... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/major-upgrade-on-the-way-for-ramselectcomau-21-06-2016.php
Two CRCs join forces to deliver big data solutions for livestock
Managing the well-being of sheep is set to become significantly easier for producers, thanks to a new collaboration tapping into the data science used in Australia’s national security systems. An agreement between the Cooperative Research Centre for Sheep Industry Innovation (Sheep CRC) and the Data to Decisions Cooperative Research Centre (D2D CRC) will see the two groups working together to develop new data-based... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/two-crcs-join-forces-to-deliver-big-data-solutions-for-livestock-31-05-2016.php
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