[alpaca_fibre] Re: Sire Reference Program

  • From: Mary Forte Goodman <mary@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: alpaca_fibre@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 11 Apr 2004 21:35:45 -0400

HOW DOES IT FEEL TO BE SO SMART?   LUV  MARYAt 08:18 PM 4/11/2004, you wrote:
>Hi Mary,
>I'm fine, how are you doin?  The G.A.I.N. stands for The Genetic Alpaca
>Improvement Network.  It's going to be another six weeks or so before we
>are ready to go full swing.  The website is under construction now, but
>you can get a brief idea by going to www.alpacagenetics.com . I am
>attaching a file that has some of the content that I have been working
>on for the website. No one else has seen it yet except the person
>working on my website. Please don't pass it on. It is a rough draft and
>may be changed entirely before the web gets published but at least it
>will give you some idea of where we are going.  It is essentially a spin
>off of what I am doing to develop a company to scientifically accelerate
>the genetic gain we want in alpaca breeding.  Since I was developing
>this to use for our own breeding program, which is what I have been
>wanting to talk to you about but haven't had the chance yet, I thought I
>could make the same technology available to a network of other breeders
>who want to develop a more scientific breeding program as well.
>Hopefully the info about the G.A.I.N. will come together in a semi-final
>form by the National AOBA Conference in Louisville.
>Dr. and Mrs. Wayne C. Jarvis
>Everyone talks about genetic improvement, at Sixth Day Farm we're DOING
>-----Original Message-----
>From: alpaca_fibre-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>[mailto:alpaca_fibre-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Mary Forte
>Sent: Sunday, April 11, 2004 6:34 PM
>To: alpaca_fibre@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>Subject: [alpaca_fibre] Re: Sire Reference Program
>What's the G.A.I.N.?  ps. hi, how are you doin'?  mary
>At 09:26 PM 3/31/2004, you wrote:
> >Hi Ian,
> >
> >I am getting ready to do biopsies at our shearing day in May. I have
> >everything I need to take the samples. I was going to send them to the
> >histology lab at OSU for slides to be made and then read them myself,
> >but would prefer to send them to a lab in the US that already
> >understands reading them for S/P ratio and density. Tell me about the
> >processing you have available: how and where to send the samples, cost,
> >and exactly how and what they will report.  Thanks!
> >
> >Also, The G.A.I.N. will be up and running by June.  Any of your list
> >members who want to send in all of this phenotypic data that they are
> >collecting for the sire reference site can submit the data for their
> >sires, and or their hembras as well, and get computer generated reports
> >of EPDs for all of the important traits that they want to select for
> >make genetic predictions about the offspring for.  Any who don't know
> >about what EPDs are and their value for accelerating genetic gain in
> >their herds can read the chapters on genetics in your upcoming
> >International Alpaca Handbook, or the articles I wrote for Alpacas
> >Magazine in 2002 and 2003, or the article on EPDs on Mike Safley's
> >website excerpted from his book, or they can come to my lectures at the
> >AOBA National Conference in Louisville.
> >
> >Wayne
> >
> >P.S. Don't tell me the handbook is really being printed ALREADY!
> >
> >*****************************************************
> >Dr. and Mrs. Wayne C. Jarvis            "In the beginning, God
> >created.... "
> >                                                               Genesis
> >1:1
> >
> >home@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx           www.sixthdayfarm.com
> >
> >Everyone talks about genetic improvement, at Sixth Day Farm we're DOING
> >IT.
> >
> >
> >
> >-----Original Message-----
> >From: alpaca_fibre-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> >[mailto:alpaca_fibre-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Ian Watt
> >Sent: Wednesday, March 31, 2004 8:03 PM
> >To: alpaca_fibre@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> >Subject: [alpaca_fibre] Sire Reference Program
> >
> >I am delighted to announce that I have found a laboratory to undertake
> >the follicle and density counts for alpacas both here and in Australia.
> >I have also secured a website to be called alpacasiresUSA.com which
> >will be the home of the new sire listing I wrote to you all about
> >several months ago.
> >I have extended the original concept to now include some phenotype
> >features that may help disclose the underlying genotype of sires of the
> >future. I am awaiting a response from Elizabeth Paul and will, in all
> >probability, include details of gum, toenail, point and eyelid colour
> >in the sire disclosure list. I would be very interested if anyone has
> >any comments about this aspect of the project.
> >I am pasting the new program guidelines into this email for you to
> >peruse and consider. If you have any comments, I would greatly
> >appreciate you airing them on this site so we can all share the
> >thoughts.
> >Incidentally, another 20 odd breeders have joined the list as they
> >attended a workshop in California several weeks ago. New workshops are
> >planned for Maine, Colorado and Virginia later this year.
> >And the International Alpaca Handbook is finally off the presses and at
> >the bindery awaiting binding!!
> >Cheers,
> >Ian Watt
> >
> >
> >Preamble
> >Selection of sires is possibly the single most important breeding
> >decision any owner makes in striving for excellence in their alpaca
> >business.
> >The impact of a sire across a herd is more significant than any other
> >single breeding decision.
> >The American alpaca industry uses more sires across its national herd
> >than is probably necessary. Supporters of a wide gene pool for the
> >industry would dispute this, but, from a production perspective, it is
> >hard to argue an alternative point of view.
> >The lack of a breed standard (for the industry) allows the broadest
> >possible interpretation on what comprises an acceptable conformation. A
> >show standard goes beyond what is, or could reasonably be expected of,
> >an animal primarily devoted to fibre production ie the show standard
> >aims at a much higher level of conformation correctness than is usually
> >reflected in a fibre production breeding emphasis.
> >Breeders who aim for fibre excellence in their alpacas often lack the
> >tools with which to make informed and productive genetic selections.
> >Too often males are offered for service that have little or no
> >supportive objective data that provide objectively obtained information
> >for the female owner and breeder. This information may not be important
> >to many breeders (at the moment) but will become increasingly important
> >as the rate of genetic improvement becomes harder and harder to
> >achieve. This is reflected most dramatically when the phenotype
> >differences between animals being considered for joining are not
> >immediately or apparently obvious.
> >Breeders seeking superior fibre characteristics and production will be
> >looking for more than show results and perceived quality than is
> >currently the industry standard in the United States.
> >Breeders aiming to sit inside the top 20% or better of the national
> >herd (any national herd) will seek more and more objectively measured
> >information to aid their individual selection processes.
> >Professionally oriented breeders will adopt a much more challenging
> >approach to the selection of sires and this will also apply to the
> >introduction of new female genetics into the individual herd as well.
> >This program is designed to not only apply objective assessment data to
> >both male and female selection criteria but to also show a way for
> >progressive breeders to position themselves for the future in terms of
> >breeding and selling advanced fibre genetics.
> >The following criteria suggestions are aimed at sire selections but can
> >apply equally to female selection protocols as well.
> >This program is about placing fibre as a higher priority than
> >conformation by objective measurement and the underpinning of
> >conformation correctness through strict adherence to a standard.
> >
> >The Program
> >
> >Because the influence of any sire is far greater across the national
> >herd than any individual female, it is important that sires be
> >rigorously examined for possible genetic conformational weaknesses. It
> >is important that these traits be identified as health and welfare
> >issues rather than cosmetic or environmental differences or effects.
> >There is currently no industry conformation standard in place to
> >measure sires (or females for that matter) against, nor is there any
> >prospect of being one in the foreseeable future.
> >The use of objectively collected and measured fleece data is not widely
> >used in the promotion of sires.
> >It is doubtful whether many breeders physically examine sires unless
> >they see them at a show or live close by. Many breeders send females
> >for mating to sight unseen sires and presumably rely upon a show result
> >as a tick of conformational approval. This is not necessarily a sound
> >breeding practice.
> >
> >First requirement.
> >Each sire will be required to pass a physical conformational
> >examination as described on a pro-forma established for such a purpose.
> >This examination is identical to that adopted by the Australian Alpaca
> >Association (AAA) for registration of males as sires approved for
> >progeny registration into the International Alpaca Register, owned and
> >operated by the AAA. Under the AAA scheme, any male used to sire cria
> >able to be registered must pass this test before the sire is used to
> >get a female pregnant.
> >Each component of the standard must be passed for the male to be
> >considered satisfactory - there are no trade-offs, an animal must pass
> >every requirement.
> >There is no fleece component.
> >The examination must be done by a veterinarian so that potentrial
> >customers can be assured that the certification has been done by an
> >independent and qualified person.
> >Second requirement.
> >Each sire will be required to be fleece tested using the OFDA2000
> >testing technology. A fleece sample from each mid-side will be required
> >and the average of the two tests used as the final figure.
> >The sample will be collected by an independent person, divided in half
> >with one sample forwarded by the sampler to the program coordinator and
> >the other half retained by the owner under seal.
> >The information required by the program will include micron, standard
> >deviation, coefficient of variation, comfort factor, staple length,
> >colour and average fibre profile.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >Third requirement.
> >The fleece will be weighed at shearing by an independent person who
> >will record total fleece weight and saddle. The male will be required
> >to be shorn from the ears down the neck, the body and legs down to the
> >knee, excluding the tail.
> >The weight will be recorded and affirmed by the owner.
> >The shorn fleece will be raised to a height of eighteen inches from a
> >table top and dropped. This will be done three times and the weight of
> >the fleece recorded. This procedure will remove a considerable part of
> >any dust in the fleece.
> >
> >
> >Fourth requirement.
> >Breeders of coloured alpacas are becoming increasingly aware of the
> >phenotype expression of the genetics underlying what they see in the
> >flesh. There is an increasing sophistication being exhibited by
> >coloured breeders especially since the publication of Elizabeth Paul's
> >"The Alpaca Colour Key". In order to meet this demand and to foster
> >itys growth, each male will have any identifying colour spots disclosed
> >as well as eye colour, eyelid colour, points colour, toenail colour and
> >gum colour. These potential genetic colour identifiers will be
> >important to discerning colour breeders of the future.
> >
> >
> >Additional option.
> >This option will allow owners of sires to have their sire tested for
> >primary:secondary follicle count as well as a density count. Owners
> >will be provided with a kit comprising all the materials and equipment
> >needed to undertake the test and a comprehensive set of instructions
> >which will allow a competent person to do the collection without the
> >need for a veterinarian. It is suggested however that the vet could do
> >the biopsy at the time of the physical examination. This is a one-off
> >procedure and is offered for those breeders who might want to identify
> >their top females within the herd.
> >
> >The information derived from the processing of the four requirements
> >will paint a composite picture of any sire using objectively collected
> >data. This data can then be used to make some initial assessments of
> >the sire, allow comparisons between sires and lets sires be assessed on
> >performance rather than subjective assessment reinforced by emotive
> >promotion.
> >The exercising of the additional option adds a far deeper dimension to
> >the selection process and strikes a very new line of breeder disclosure
> >to potential customers for sire services. This is very much leading
> >edge genetics.
> >
> >
> >Access to data
> >The data and documentation of each sire would then be collated and
> >processed into a website listing within a listing of "accredited sires"
> >(or some such identifier). This website would be managed and maintained
> >by Alpaca Consulting Services of Australia and would be open for public
> >access.
> >There would be a fee structure for animals entering the program and an
> >annual fee to cover the testing, collating and data processing of the
> >annual shearing results.
> >Once entered into the site, the animal will remain until, either it
> >dies, the owner decides to withdraw or no new data has been collected
> >for two seasons.
> >There will be a photograph of the sire on the site.
> >There will be no mention of show results.
> >There will be an option to link any particular sire to the owners
> >website or email address.
> >There will be no service fee or other advertising on the site.
> >
> >Benefits
> >The industry-wide benefit is access to sires demonstrating objectively
> >measured fleece and conformation information collected by an
> >independent person. This feature alone will place these sires at the
> >forefront of breeders minds as the collection, testing and distribution
> >of the information is not managed by the owner of the sire - a truly
> >vested interest - but by someone with absolutely no interest in any
> >animal.
> >By making the data public both breeders and sire owners have a
> >benchmark against which they can measure any potential sire but also a
> >wider range of sires as this program allows any sire, or potential
> >sire, in.
> >Over time, the fleece history of the sire will become clear with those
> >sires not blowing out in any measurable traits becoming more recognized
> >and thus, potentially, more attractive as future herd sires.
> >Owners of listed sires will no doubt be recognized as leading edge
> >breeders as demonstrated through their strength of conviction in
> >submitting their animals to scrutiny over the internet.
> >Breeders looking for sires will, for the first time perhaps, have a
> >broader range of sires from which to select as small breeders unable or
> >unwilling to exhibit at shows will have a vehicle through which they
> >can market and promote their animals at minimal cost and at maximum
> >credibility.
> >Finally, the conformation examination by a veterinarian will, for the
> >first time, underpin an expanded guarantee of correctness of
> >conformation by a sire owner.
> >These are benefits that will not only enhance the reputation of the
> >animal but also the owner in an industry which will place more and more
> >emphasis on fleece production than is currently the case.
> >In essence, breeders offering sires entered into the program will be
> >attesting that their animals have met a documented conformation
> >standard, have undergone independently collected, tested and recorded
> >fleece measurements and, if selected, are prepared to disclose
> >secondary to primary follicle ratios to buyers of both animals and
> >service options.
> >
> >
> >
> >---
> >List Name: Alpaca Fibre Production
> >ListAddress: alpaca_fibre@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> >List Archives: //www.freelists.org/archives/alpaca_fibre/
> >List Administrator: Ian Watt (alpacaconsult@xxxxxxxxxxxxx)
> >
> >How to Unsubscribe: send an email to alpaca_fibre-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> >and put "unsubscribe" (without the quotes) in the Subject line of the
> >email.
> >
> >---
> >List Name: Alpaca Fibre Production
> >ListAddress: alpaca_fibre@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> >List Archives: //www.freelists.org/archives/alpaca_fibre/
> >List Administrator: Ian Watt (alpacaconsult@xxxxxxxxxxxxx)
> >
> >How to Unsubscribe: send an email to alpaca_fibre-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> >and put "unsubscribe" (without the quotes) in the Subject line of the
>Mary Forte Goodman
>List Name: Alpaca Fibre Production
>ListAddress: alpaca_fibre@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>List Archives: //www.freelists.org/archives/alpaca_fibre/
>List Administrator: Ian Watt (alpacaconsult@xxxxxxxxxxxxx)
>How to Unsubscribe: send an email to alpaca_fibre-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>and put "unsubscribe" (without the quotes) in the Subject line of the
>-- Binary/unsupported file stripped by Ecartis --
>-- Type: application/msword
>-- File: Genetic Alpaca Improvement Network Information.doc
>List Name: Alpaca Fibre Production
>ListAddress: alpaca_fibre@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>List Archives: //www.freelists.org/archives/alpaca_fibre/
>List Administrator: Ian Watt (alpacaconsult@xxxxxxxxxxxxx)
>How to Unsubscribe: send an email to alpaca_fibre-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
>and put "unsubscribe" (without the quotes) in the Subject line of the email.
Mary Forte Goodman

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