Sheep Ireland’s Eamon Wall presented the Ovidata project at the Sheep Ireland Industry Meeting held on Monday 29th April 2019 in Tullamore Court Hotel, County Offaly. The synopsis of Eamon’s presentation on the day are outlined below. To view Eamon’s full presentation for the day please click here.
OviData is one of 23 EIP (European Innovation Partnership) projects granted funding nationally by the DAFM. The objective of EIPs are as follows;
- Foster collaboration between farmers, scientists, advisors, NGOs etc
- Address specific issues or take advantage of new opportunities
- Road test new ideas to improve productivity, sustainability & efficiency
OviData will involve six Teagasc Better farm flocks and aim to assign parentage to all lambs born through genotyping. This parentage will unlock the large amount of performance data being collected on these farms and make it available to the Sheep Ireland genetic evaluations which means that every Sheep farmer in the country should be able to benefit from this project through more accurate evaluations. The information provided by this genotyping will allow each of the participating farmers to make more informed breeding decisions, thus leading to more efficient and sustainable enterprises. OviData will hopefully become a template for future commercial farm data capture into the future.
Other major objectives of OviData will be;
- To develop simple data collection protocols for farmers
- The collection of health data (lameness, dag & mastitis).
- Collection of carcase data linked to lambs
- Development and commercial farm testing of a Sheep Ireland data collection app
OviData has already collected DNA samples from all foundation breeding stock (1500 ewes and rams) involved in the project. All lambs born in spring 2019 have been DNA sampled at birth. This DNA will soon be sent for genotyping. To keep updated on the OviData, view the projects twitter feed here!
A glimpse of Eamon’s presentation can be seen below.