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A new approach for the ram buying season

Monday, 13 December 2004
With the ram buying season upon us, Tectra's Alan Marshall has some new ideas which will be helpful when selecting rams.

Alan’s catchphrase is ‘testicles are the receptacle” – encouraging a focus on the strengths of the breeding programme as opposed to the physical appearance of the animal, when purchasing a ram.


A brand new innovation which can assist this analysis is the Advanced Central Evaluation (ACE)  programme which has recently been developed by SIL (Sheep Improvement Limited). This is a large operation where 150 flocks throughout New Zealand have been investigated to find the top animal for growth and reproduction regardless of breed.


Alan believes this marks a huge step forward for the sheep industry and is another nail in the coffin for the orthodox phenotypical evaluation of rams. This idea highlights the importance of concentrating on picking the ram breeder and breeding programme before choosing a ram.
“You really need to get inside the head of the breeder and find out what he’s doing because every time you buy a ram you are effectively buying someone else’s breeding programme", he says.

For more information on the ACE programme please click here

Tectra's Alan Marshall