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.
About Marg Shedden and Bec Macarthur Onslow
Genomic test coordinators Marg Shedden and Bec Macarthur Onslow have both been working at the Sheep CRC, based in Armidale NSW, for two years.
Prior to taking on these positions, Marg came from a family cattle property and Bec came from a mixed sheep and cattle property, which included a Merino stud.
After working closely with early adopters from within the sheep breeding industry, Bec and Marg have seen firsthand from the test results the increased level of genetic gain sheep breeders can achieve using genomics, parentage and poll tests (genotype testing).
Marg added that the real benefit of genotype testing is having the ability to test for traits that aren’t normally measured.
“Genotype testing is particularly useful in enabling sheep breeders to be informed about genetic merit for traits that are normally not measured or are hard to measure such as eating quality and meat tenderness,” she said.
"Working with innovative breeders and seeing how they are putting genomic technologies to use in their enterprises is very rewarding. The future of more cost effective DNA testing is exciting to be a part of.”
Take home messages
The Sheep Genomics test is suitable for the four major breeds of Merino, Poll Dorset, White Suffolk and Border Leicester.
The parentage and poll tests can be used in any flock.
To find out more about genotype testing CLICK HERE.