Evaluation of Rambouillet, Polypay, and Romanov-White Dorper x Rambouillet ewes mated to terminal sires in an extensive rangeland production system: bode weight and wool characteristics

dc.contributor.authorMurphy, Thomas W.en
dc.contributor.authorStewart, Whitney C.en
dc.contributor.authorNotter, David R.en
dc.contributor.authorMousel, Michelle R.en
dc.contributor.authorLewis, Gregory S.en
dc.contributor.authorTaylor, J. Breten
dc.contributor.departmentAnimal and Poultry Sciencesen
dc.description.abstractThough lamb sales account for the majority of annual receipts on U.S. sheep operations, wool is an important income source for many Western flocks. Crossing fine-wool sheep with prolific or composite hair sheep breeds can increase lamb production, but fleece quality and marketability may be reduced by a greater content of nonwool fibers (e.g., med and kemp). The objectives of this study were to compare BW and wool characteristics of Rambouillet, Polypay, and Romanov-White Dorper x Rambouillet (RW-RA) ewes under extensive rangeland management conditions. Ewe BW was collected before mating (fall) and 30 d postlambing (spring) each year from 1 yr up to 4 yr of age. In spring and fall, Rambouillet and Polypay ewes were similar in BW (P >= 0.94). Spring BW did not differ (P = 0.13) between RW-RA and Polypay, but Rambouillet ewes were heavier than RW-RA in the spring (P = 0.02). Both Rambouillet and Polypay ewes were heavier Rambouillet, intermediate in Polypay, and greatest in RW-RA (P < 0.01). Wool from RW-RA ewes had greater %M, %K, and %T (P < 0.001) than wool from Rambouillet and Polypay ewes, which were not different (P > 0.99). Results indicated superior wool production for Rambouillet compared (P < 0.07) than RW-RA in the fall. Greasy fleece weight and mid-side wool samples were collected from ewes at 1 and 4 yr of age. Clean fleece weights (CFW) were estimated from average laboratory scoured yield of mid-side wool samples composited within-breed. Average fiber diameter (AFD), SD of fiber diameter (SD-FD), and percentage med (%M), kemp (%K), and total medullated fibers (%T) were quantified on individual mid-side wool samples. There was no difference in 1-yr-old CFW among breed types (P >= 0.96). Four-yr-old Rambouillet ewes had heavier CFW (2.29 kg; P < 0.001) than 4-yr-old Polypay (1.83 kg) and RW-RA ewes (1.86 kg), which were not different (P > 0.99). Within 1- and 4-yr-olds, AFD differed among breed type (P < 0.001) and was the finest for Rambouillet (20.1 and 21.9 mu m, respectively), intermediate for RW-RA (22.8 and 24.8 mu m), and coarsest for Polypay (24.2 and 26.7 mu m). Also within 1-and 4-yr olds, SD-FD was lowest in with the coarser, more variable wool produced by Polypay and RW-RA. Still, past research reported greater lamb production in Polypay and RW-RA ewes which, under recent market conditions, would be associated with greater annual gross revenue for these breed types than for Rambouillet.en
dc.description.adminPublic domain – authored by a U.S. government employeeen
dc.rightsCC0 1.0 Universalen
dc.subjectbody weighten
dc.subjectfleece characteristicsen
dc.subjectmedullated fibersen
dc.titleEvaluation of Rambouillet, Polypay, and Romanov-White Dorper x Rambouillet ewes mated to terminal sires in an extensive rangeland production system: bode weight and wool characteristicsen
dc.title.serialJournal of Animal Scienceen
dc.typeArticle - Refereeden
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