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ECONOMIC TRAITS FOR

SHEEP AND GOAT


• Economic traits are those which have monetary
value in the livestock and poultry production. Most
of the economic traits are governed by many pairs
of genes so known as quantitative traits or
polygenic traits.

Mainly of two types
• Qualitative and quantitative
Qualitative includes
• Behavioural ,morphological etc.
Quantitative traits includes
• Growth traits ,
• production traits ,
• reproduction traits
• Birth weight
• Age of maturity
• Age of first lambing / kidding
• Clean yield
• Staple length
• Multiple birth
• Milk production
• Carcass weight
• Dressing percentage
• Weaning wt. 60 days
• Weaning wt. 120 days
• Mature body wt.
• Rate of gain post weaning
• Grease fleece weight
• Clean fleece weight
• Breed eg.
• Birth weight : As such birth weight is of little value
except that it is related to vigour at birth and rate of
gain.
• Heritability for birth weight is 0.15
• Birth weight avg.
• Sheep 2.82
• Goat 1.86
• Heritability % 0.15
• Weaning weight : The age at weaning can vary
according to the conditions under which the animals are
reared, but 120 days has been taken as the standard.
• Weight at weaning 60 days
• Sheep 13.56 kg
• Goat 7.09 kg
Heritability % 0.20
120 days
Sheep 20.86 kg
Goat-11.07 kg
Heritability % - 0.25
REPRODUCTION TRAIT

• Age of maturity- sheep 5 to 12 months


• Goat – 4 to 12 months

• Age at first lambing-


• sheep -18.8(+-0.8) month
• Goat – 13-17 month

• Lambing interval
• The mean lambing interval 307 ± 14 days.
• the mean litter size being 1.12.
• the average ewe age on completion of productive life
would be 5.8 years.
• Mature body weight
• Sheep male38.48 female 28.58
• Goat male 33.86 female 32.50
• Heritability % 0.40
Annual reproduction rate
The annual reproduction rate is calculated as the mean litter size × 365
÷ lambing interval.

Overall this was 1.33 lambs per breeding ewe per year.
• Researchers have estimated the heritability (the
ability to "pass on" traits to offspring) of the
economically important traits .
• Generally, if the heritability estimate is less than 20
per cent, progress is slow.
• A heritability estimate of 20 to 40 per cent is
considered medium.
• A heritability estimate greater than 40 per cent is
high.
trait Heritability
Birth wt. 0.15
Weaning wt. 60 days 0.20
Weaning wt. 120 days 0.25
Mature body wt. 0.40
Rate of gain post weaning 0.40
Grease fleece weight 0.25-0.60
Clean fleece weight 0.25-0.60
Clean yield 0.30-0.40
Staple length 0.30-0.65
Multiple birth 0.10
Milk production 0.10
Carcass weight 0.35
Dressing percentage 0.10

Source: Sheep Production Handbook. 1996. American Sheep Industry


Association, Inc. Production, Education, and Research Council.
• Fleece characteristics : Roughly 20% of the income from
sheep enterprise is from wool. Thus, wool production is
an important component from the economic standpoint.
Fleece with high wool weight, long staple length and
uniformly fine fibres will be most valuable. Increase in
staple length has been associated with increase in
fleece weight.
• For every 1cm increase in staple length, approx. 0.27 kg
increase in grease wool and 0.18 kg increase in clean
wool has been observed.
• Selection of heavy fleece weights has been found to
improve ability of feed consumption and feed efficiency
for wool production.
• Quality of wool
Fineness of fibre (diameter) : measured only under
protein microscope/lanometer; at the field level, one
can differentiate between coarse and fine wool by
spreading the fleece on the body of the sheep.
• ISI standards :
• ≤ 34.4µ : A grade
• 34.4-37.0 µ : B grade
• 37.1-40.0 µ : C grade
• ≥ 40.0 µ : D grade

• The method of selection to be applied directly
depends on the genetic parameters of the
characters and the population concerned. As most
of the characters related to fleece characterization
are highly heritable, their weighted heritability
estimates in Indian breeds of sheep are as follows:-
Greasy fleece weight : 0.210 ± .05
Average fibre diameter : 0.453 ± .447
Medullation percentage : 0.661 ± .556
Staple length : 0.400 ± .050
• Grease fleece weight-
• 0.359 /six month.
• Heritability % 0.25-0.60
• Clean fleece weight-
• Heritability % 0.25-0.60
• Staple length-8.58 cm
• Heritability %0.30-0.65
• Milk poduction
• 0.5-1.5 kg
• Heritability % 0.10
• Dressing percentage 45-50 %
• Heritability -0.10 %
Thank you