In today’s seedstock industry nothing is more important than knowing your stocks’ parentage – without it, you’re missing out on crucial information that will enhance the accuracy of your stud’s breeding values and accelerate the rate of genetic gain in your flock.
NEOGEN’s DNA test for parentage can quickly and accurately provide a full pedigree, linking a lamb to its dam and/or sire, and saving you time and labour in the process.
By accurately assigning pedigree the accuracy of Australian Sheep Breeding Values (ASBVs) is improved, and this in turn can help you drive genetic improvements in your flock through better ram and ewe selection.
In the absence of accurate parentage, information on individual animal breeding values can only be based off the animal’s performance records as measured by the breeder during its lifetime.
The reliability of this information in predicting breeding performance is enhanced by combining it with data from relatives, including parents, siblings and progeny.
The power of knowing an animal’s sire allows paternal half siblings to also be used in the individual animal’s breeding value evaluation, while correct identification of an animal’s dam is essential for measuring traits around weaning time and accounting for the animal’s pre-weaning environment.
Accurate knowledge of parentage not only enhances your own breeding program, but advances the breed’s reference population information as well. Sire identification allows linkage to occur across flocks and drop years, allowing genetic trends to be observed and objective comparisons to be made between flocks.
Traditionally sheep breeders have determined parentage via single sire matings and mothering up, which Sheep CRC research found had average error rates of about 5% in sire or dam assignment.
Using the most accurate form of parentage assignment of DNA testing increases accuracy of selection with the flow-on benefits of increasing genetic gain across the flock by 1-2%.
Along with accurate parentage assignment, DNA parentage testing can relieve some management constraints from multi-sire lambing paddocks.
Combined, correct parentage information can provide an increase in ASBV accuracy of up to 35% in terminal sheep breeds.
- DNA parentage testing is available as a stand-alone product or part of the Sheep Genomic test with NEOGEN. Visit www.sheepdna.com.au or contact your Neogen Territory Manager to start testing today.