"Young, smart and ready" - the future of the sheep industry is in good hands

A series of brief case studies have been written focusing on successful young people in the sheep industry. To read their stories click on the links below:


Luke Murphy, Karbullah Poll Merino Stud, Goondiwindi (QLD)

Luke Murphy
Luke Murphy

 

Measurement holds the key

“My Dad’s favourite saying is if we can’t measure it we can’t improve it!

The availability of advancements like ASBVs and genomics tests are taking sheep breeding programs to a new level of accuracy and efficiency. But, there is certainly still a place for visual assessments.”


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Jamie Heinrich, Ella Matta White Suffolk & Poll Merino Stud, Parndana SA

Jamie Heinrich
Jamie Heinrich

 

Exciting times for young sheep breeders

After three years working for Thomas Foods International (TFI), Jamie Heinrich has returned to the family property where he is now heavily involved in data collection and management for their stud operation.

“From a sheep genetics perspective, it’s an extremely exciting time for me to come back on to the land. With improvements being made every day to genomics and embryo transfer technology, there are certainly big opportunities going forward for young sheep producers.”



Adam Price, Majardah Poll Dorset Stud, Glencoe (SA)

Adam, Kallan, Kaleb and Jodie Price
Adam, Kallan, Kaleb and Jodie Price

 

Targeting specific traits

The Price family have been advocates for LAMBPLAN since the mid-nineties, so Adam recognises the value that technological advancements like ASBVs can have in a stud breeding program.

“With the use of LAMBPLAN and now the introduction of DNA testing, we have the capacity to target specific traits for change, while holding others constant.”



Alistair Michael, Leahcim Poll Merino & White Suffolk Stud, Snowtown (SA)

Alistair Michael
Alistair Michael

 

Three-fold increase of genetic gain

Alistair Michael has seen first-hand how advanced genomic and reproductive technologies can combine to increase the rate of genetic gain by up to 300 per cent.

“JIVET (Juvenile in vitro embryo transfer) is delivering stud lambs three times as quickly as those from our conventionally joined flock.

The program combines visual appraisal with the latest in DNA testing technology.”



Caris Jones, Ejanding Poll Merino Stud, Dowerin (WA)

Caris Jones
Caris Jones

 

Impact of feed use efficiency on mating ewe lambs

New research from University of Western Australia honours student Caris Jones is determining how to increase sheep reproduction while decreasing food costs.

"My work with the Maternal Efficiency flock looks at improving reproduction, feed-use efficiency, lamb survival and growth in Merinos. We aim to improve the conversion of available feed into kilograms of lamb weaned per kilogram of ewe joined."



Dion Woolford, Karawatha Park Merino & Poll Merino Stud, Kimba (SA)

Bert & Dion Woolford
Bert & Dion Woolford

 

The benefit of ASBVs

“One thing I learned after coming back onto the family farm four years ago, is that information is power. The advent of ASBVs means we are much better informed to make decisions about the future of our sheep breeding programs.”



Dr Kelly Manton-Pearce, Murdoch University, Murdoch (WA)

Kelly Manton-Pearce with son Alaistair
Kelly Manton-Pearce with son Alaistair

 

Understanding lamb market demands

The driving force for Western Australian farmer Dr Kelly Manton-Pearce to successfully apply for a 2012 Nuffield Scholarship was the need to understand the market specifications for sheepmeat that she and husband Alan were producing on their Yealering property.

“My Nuffield project was largely focussed on what drives the current and future lamb market demands. Having this insight will help the Australian lamb industry in specialising its product. Furthermore, it will help us form better relationships with those up the supply chain - where the future is for our lamb.”



Meghan Cornelius, Department of Agriculture & Food, Katanning (WA)

Meghan Cornelius
Meghan Cornelius

 

Targeted treatment could reduce drench resistance

New strategies for targeted treatment to control scour worms in adult sheep are being developed in order to avoid drench resistance.

Murdoch University (WA) post-graduate student Meghan Cornelius said the approach has the potential to prolong the effectiveness of chemical products before resistance develops, and help reduce the cost and effort of drenching.



Dr Khama Kelman, Murdoch University, Murdoch (WA)

Khama Kelman
Khama Kelman

 

Big data delivers clearer growth picture for lambs

New research based on high-quality and large-scale data sets from the sheep industry’s Information Nucleus program will help breeders manage expectations about lamb growth rates, particularly for twins and triplets.

Data from the Sheep CRC’s research flocks has confirmed that lambs born and raised as multiples have a reduced response to increased sire PWWT (post weaning weight).



Tom Granleese, University of New England, Armidale (NSW)

Tom Granleese
Tom Granleese

 

Supercharging genetic gain

New research is tackling the challenge of how sheep producers can use the combination of modern DNA-based technologies and reproductive technologies to maximise genetic gain, without increasing rates of inbreeding.

Current estimates indicate that between 18-30 per cent faster genetic gain is possible by using genomic (DNA) testing for selection.



Dr Honor Calnan, Murdoch University, Murdoch (WA)

Honor Calnan
Honor Calnan

 

Diet driver of lamb colour

Improving the colour stability of lamb meat through changes in diet, breeding and meat packaging could hold the key to enhancing the retail appeal of lamb to consumers.

With meat colour a key driver of a consumer’s purchasing decision, the new research findings from multi-award winning student Honor Calnan on how to maximise the stability of lamb will assist the industry to improve colour stability and thereby prolong product shelf life.



Marg Shedden & Bec Macarthur Onslow, DNA Processing Office, Armidale (NSW)

Marg Shedden & Bec Macarthur Onlsow
Marg Shedden & Bec Macarthur Onlsow

 

Working with innovative breeders

Before superior genomic information can be put to use by sheep breeders in the paddock, complex DNA information must first be processed by a highly skilled team in the laboratory.



News Releases

2015 - The sheep industry’s year of the “young, smart and ready”
The sheep industry is this year celebrating the skills and ambitions of the next generation, with the 2015 Sheep CRC calendar featuring ‘young, smart and ready’ producers and researchers. The calendar was mailed out around Australia before Christmas, with each month featuring a photo and quote from an up-and-coming industry participant, while the Sheep CRC website is featuring a longer story about the careers of each... Click Here To Read Full Article » http://www.sheepcrc.org.au/information/news/2015-the-sheep-industrys-year-of-the-young-smart-and-ready-05-01-2015.php
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