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Friday, January 17 • 1:00pm - 2:30pm
Sheep Genetics: Tools, Decisions and Practical Applications

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The sheep industry has been in decline for decades having lost significant market share to imports.  However, we have the tools and resources to turn this trend around.  For many years, the National Sheep Improvement Program (NSIP) has developed methods for improving productivity of flocks under a variety of management strategies.  Combining detailed on farm record keeping with advanced statistics, NSIP generates Estimated Breeding Values that can be used to select for traits that are economically important to your operation.  Tom will explain the benefits and pitfalls associated with this method of quantitative genetic selection and how he’s taken a balanced approach to improve his home flock in the areas of parasite resistance and weaning percentage.  Tom will discuss an ongoing transition in his operation to an entirely grass-fed program.  He will explain how he effectively uses estimated breeding values to increase production of grass-fed lamb and the implications for these methods in the northeast region and beyond.

avatar for Tom Hodgman

Tom Hodgman

Co-Owner and Co-Operator, Waldoview Farm
Tom Hodgman owns and operates Waldoview Farm, a forage-based seedstock producer of Katahdin Sheep in Winterport, Maine.  Tom holds a B.S. in Environmental Science from Unity College and an M.S. in Range Management from Washington State University.  Following a career of nearly 3... Read More →

Friday January 17, 2020 1:00pm - 2:30pm EST
Edgewater - Lake Morey Resort