February 2017

The rains keep coming. Summer forage planted on 18th January is looking good by mid-February.

The high selection pressure for fleece characteristics relating to summer rains have shown us how good the vast majority of our ewes are at coping without the use of chemicals to prevent flystrike and fleece rot. Genetic resistance is always the best resistance, because it is transferrable to subsequent generations. This testing summer will set us up to build on the gains of the past.

Our flock has a long history of selection against the negative effects on wool from warm spring and summer rains. With our older ewes carrying 11 months fleece and the younger ones 8 months growth, we have severely tested their resistance. Not every year provides the opportunity for field testing; the summer of 2016/17 certainly has.