Selecting ewes for temperament

Tip and trick Romania

Ewes with calmer temperaments have higher body weights (+5%), produce higher litters (+5%), their lambs have better daily gains (+10%) and weaning rates. Temperament of ewes can be assessed using a 5-point score scale at weighing, while spending 30 seconds in the weighing crate: 1 calm, no movement; 2 calm, with occasional movements; 3 moderately movements; 4 abrupt episodic movements; 5 permanent episodic movements. For breeding purposes, it is advised to use ewes that have scores of 1 and 2. Given that the temperament is consisted throughout the animal’s life, the temperament/behavioural reactivity scoring can be done at an early age (e.g. at weaning).

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