Flock data reminders
For the past number of weeks we have been contacting breeders on an individual basis in relation to their lambing and weight data entered thus far in 2015. Of course we are looking at all aspects of the data recorded by each breeder but the main areas of attention are:
- Unaccounted for ewes – We are insisting that an event is recorded for all ewes in each flock e.g. lambed, sold, died, barren, aborted, not mated (ewe lambs only).
- NSIS tags – All animals in a flock should have an NSIS recorded. Sheep without an NSIS will not have stars displayed on catalogues, ram search etc. this year.
- Lamb Mortality – A certain level of lamb mortality is expected in all flocks. Lamb deaths are a critical piece of data for the Sheep Ireland evaluations.
- Lambing difficulty – Similar to mortality a certain level of lambing difficulty occurs in all flocks regardless of breed or management.
- Lamb birth weights – A range in lamb birth weights should be visible in all flocks regardless of breed or management.
- Bottle reared, fostered lambs – another critical piece of information.
- Lamb weights – 40 day weight, weaning weight etc. A weight is required for all lambs were possible.
DQI – Date Quality Index
The DQI is a mechanism to rate the data recorded by individual breeders involved in LambPlus. At present this DQI will only be made known to each individual flock owner and it will not be publically visible. In 2015 however it will be one of the essential criteria determining whether an individual breeders €uroStar evaluations get published publically. Should breeders not achieve a certain level of data quality then their respective genetic evaluations will not be published. We believe that this is only fair to the breeders that go to a huge amount of effort that every piece of data is recorded in an accurate and timely fashion on their farm. It is also only fair to the commercial sheep farmer purchasing a €uroStar ram. The DQI will provide these farmers with confidence in the fact that the ram they are purchasing has originated from a flock where the quality of data recording is at a high standard.
Sheep 2015 official launch
On Wednesday this week, the Sheep 2015 organisation committee came together to officially launch the event. In attendance on the day was Minister of State, Tom Hayes. Many other industry representatives were present also including all main sponsors. Plans for this free event are progressing rapidly and full details of the event will be heavily promoted in all farming press in the coming weeks. The committees are still inviting exhibitors to take trade stands at the showcase which takes place on June 20th in Athenry, Co. Galway and which promises to attract huge crowds.