Understanding sheep genetics

Sheep farmers should be constantly on the lookout for ways to improve their business. Understanding sheep genetics is one way to increase productivity and profitability.

In order to understand sheep genetics, you need to be familiar with some of the key terms used in this field, including heritability, repeatability and genetic correlations, and how these relate to your flock.

It's also important to develop a breeding objective for your flock and select rams from a stud that help you reach this objective.

As each lamb possesses the genes of its parents, you can ensure they are more productive, marketable and better breeders themselves by selecting breeding sheep with the best genetic makeup.

This guide will help you understand some of the complexities of sheep genetics and how to benchmark sheep against Australian Sheep Breeding Values. It also explains how to develop a breeding objective.