Ram breeders are embracing the opportunities offered by the new genetic selection tool, RamSelect, with almost 50 studs from across the country already listing their sale catalogue for use by the web-based app. RamSelect.com.au was launched just six weeks ago and already more than 3,100 stud rams have been listed by breeders on the site for scrutiny by commercial buyers.
With more and more commercial breeders demanding objective data to assist with their genetic selections, RamSelect.com.au allows producers to compare rams using Australian Sheep Breeding Values (ASBVs) without the need for a lot of work to get the most out of the data from Sheep Genetics.
“The success of the RamSelect app has been dependent on stud producers uploading their sale catalogues for listing to allow commercial ram buyers the opportunity to compare sheep from around the country,” Sheep CRC chief executive James Rowe said.
“There are currently 38 stud sale catalogues listed on RamSelect (15 Merino, 15 Terminal, 4 Dohne and 4 Maternal studs), plus a further nine sales which were listed and have already been completed - so in total 47 studs have used the site so far.
“These studs have provided access to the ASBV data via their on-line Sheep Genetics catalogues for 1272 Merino rams, 1292 Terminals, 167 Maternals, and 435 Dohnes that are for sale this season. “This clearly shows there is strong and growing support from the stud sector for this powerful new tool which allows commercial breeders to objectively compare rams based on their individual needs.”
RamSelect.com.au was developed by the Cooperative Research Centre for Sheep Industry Innovation (Sheep CRC) in conjunction with Telstra, Australia’s leading telecommunications provider; Pivotal Labs in San Francisco, one of the leading software development companies in the world; and the NSW Department of Primary Industries, which provided expertise from the initial concept to the final product.
The app allows ram buyers to follow a few simple prompts to find a list of rams which meet their individual breeding objectives. The prompts cover: breed and type of rams required; number of rams to be placed in the ranked list; the region and/or stud to search; the type of sale – auction and/or private treaty; and the relative emphasis on traits that drive profit in different production systems.
“The app then takes care of the calculations in close to ‘real time’ as users alter the settings for their specific breeding objectives,” Prof. Rowe said. “The user is almost instantly provided with a list of rams ranked for their merit against the criteria they have just set. They can then refer to the ranked list when they visually inspect animals on sale day.”
Prof. Rowe urged all studs registered with LAMBPLAN, MERINOSELECT and DOHNE to load their sale catalogues with Sheep Genetics as soon as they have their list of rams for sale. “If you don’t specify which rams are for sale using the Sheep Genetics web site catalogues, you and your clients will not be able to use RamSelect.com.au to select the most suitable rams to purchase,” he said.
More information is available www.ramselect.com.au
Media contact: Michael Thomson on 07 4927 0805 / 0408 819 666