Sheep breeding and flock health management will be the key focus at the upcoming “Breeding for Performance” event being organised by AFBI, CAFRE, AgriSearch and the LMC. This will be held on Tuesday 9th July at 7pm in Draperstown Livestock Market. The event will last for approximately two hours.
The event forms part of a series on “Future Proofing Beef & Sheep Farming” being held during 2019 to communicate the latest findings of beef and sheep research.
The keynote speaker at the upcoming event is Sam Boon from Signet breeding services. Signet is the national genetic evaluation service for sheep and provides breeders and commercial producers with the necessary tools to select breeding stock. On the evening, Sam will deliver an update on Signet recording services and ram selection, along with new breeding indexes and RamCompare – the UK’s first commercial progeny test which has been testing performance-recorded rams from terminal sire breeds since 2015.
Following this Dr Aurelie Aubry from AFBI will deliver an update on lamb performance and results to date for RamCompare NI. The Northern Ireland RamCompare test flock which is testing rams with a range of muscle indexes from terminal sire breeds recorded on the Signet and Sheep Ireland systems.
Jason Barley from AFBI’s Veterinary Sciences Division will then deliver a talk on how farmers and vets can implement an effective flock health plan. Originally, flock health planning was very much focused on disease prevention. In addition to improving animal health and welfare, flock health planning also improves the profitability of farm enterprises.
Finally, Dr Eileen McCloskey from CAFRE will discuss the value of data collection on farm and targets that sheep producers should be aiming to achieve from their flock.
All farmers are welcome to attend. Further information can be found on the AgriSearch website. Please note that photographs and videos will be taken at this event for promotional and knowledge exchange purposes to include press releases, social media and websites.