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Effects of selection for divergent ultrasonic fat depth in rams on progeny fatness

  • G. L. Bennett (a1), H. H. Meyer (a1) and A. H. Kirton (a1)

Abstract

Fat depths of Southdown and Suffolk rams were ultrasonically measured several times prior to 18 months of age. Ultrasonic measurements were regressed on live weight and deviations from this regression were standardized and summed to select rams with high and low fat depth to produce crossbred progeny for slaughter. An average of 3·24 standard deviations separated high and low sires. Progeny were slaughtered at two ages to determine differences in carcass fatness and its development. A significant difference of 0·5 mm fat depth over the loin eye muscle was found between progeny of low and high sires. Progeny from Suffolk high sires had greater tissue depth over the rib and higher kidney fat weight than those from Suffolk low sires but differences were small or reversed in Southdown progeny. Low progeny had significantly less estimated carcass chemical fat than high progeny. Fat depth C increased less in low progeny between early and late slaughter ages. However, no difference in partition of carcass weight gain to fat weight gain was observed between high and low progeny. Differences in fat weight between high and low progeny, as well as between Southdown and Suffolk progeny, appeared to have occurred prior to the earlier slaughter age.

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Effects of selection for divergent ultrasonic fat depth in rams on progeny fatness

  • G. L. Bennett (a1), H. H. Meyer (a1) and A. H. Kirton (a1)

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