Merino industry history and future on show at field day
Lambs conceived by Merino sires whose semen was frozen in 1968 and defrosted for use in a sire evaluation trial in 2018 will be a key feature of the 2019 Balmoral Sire Evaluation Group field day at ‘Kooringal’, Coleraine, on Friday, February 22.
The annual field day of the group, which has been running Merino sire evaluation trials for over 20 years, includes the display of 2017 and 2018 AMSEA trial progeny and data, industry speakers and displays and demonstrations from industry businesses.
The lambs from the 2018 trial were conceived through artificial insemination in March and include semen frozen by Sydney University in 1968 when artificial insemination was in its infancy.
The 2018 trial joined with a total of 20 Merino sires to 56 ewes each.
At the time of insemination, the motility of the 50-year-old semen was comparable with more recently collected samples, and the lambing percentages for the sire are similarly comparable to other entrants.
This year’s speaker program, beginning at approximately 2pm, will include Australian Wool Innovation chair, Colette Garnsey, and Dr John Steinfort, Steinfort AgVet, who will speak on the development of a liquid nitrogen breech modification treatment for sheep.
The day will also have data available on the 2015 and 2016 Merino Lifetime Productivity project sheep. This major industry project being run by AWI and AMSEA was hosted by the group at ‘Tuloona’, Harrow, in its inaugural years.
To keep up to date with field day information, follow Balmoral Breeders on facebook and Instagram, or visit www.balmoralbreeders.com.au