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Terminal Sire Decision: Single or Twin?

Discussion in 'Breeds & Breeding - Sheep' started by shepherdO, May 22, 2019.

?

Have your experiences shown that rams born a twin improve the prolifacy of their daughters?

  1. I've experienced a clear link

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. My experiences haven't confirmed this theory

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. I don't have enough experience to comment.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. May 22, 2019
    shepherdO

    shepherdO Overrun with beasties

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    Hi all,
    I'm in the process of choosing a ram for my flock of commercial ewes. There's a great Texel farm locally which I visited, and was astounded by the quality animals there. Anyhoo, I'm looking to purchase one of their young rams to use as my new breeding ram in the fall.

    The one that I'm considering is, however, a single, and as I'm hoping to use him both as a terminal sire, and ALSO keep some of his nicer daughters for future breeding, I'm wondering how much the fact that he's 'only' a single will influence whether I get him or not.

    Some suggest that if you want to have ewe lambs with good prolifacy, make sure their sire is a multiple. This guy is only a single, BUT he's from a prolific line, and a mother who's had multiples before. The breeder (who's more than willing to sell me a different guy) said:

    "He is from a ewe that had twins last year, her twin sister had twins this year and last year and her dam has had triplets twice and twins twice so there is a history of multiple births in the back ground of this ram. His great granddam had triplets several times as have many of the daughters we have kept from her. We have 82Y, 6A, 8B, 75B (his granddam) still in the flock from his great granddam and often get triplets from them. So I guess it is a gamble."

    Thoughts? Although his dam singled this time, she seems to be related to good, prolific ewes.

    Should I go for him? He was well put together, good muscling, and from a great ram sire.

    Dan
     
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  2. May 22, 2019
    Roving Jacobs

    Roving Jacobs Seeing Spots

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    The propensity for multiples is genetic but it takes nutrition to actually get them. If the ewe has a strong history of multiples and simply didn't have the stars align for her this year I wouldn't have an issue with a single. This was a weird year for me and I had a lot of singles out of ewes I know have the potential for more. It's not their fault, the weather just made fall grazing a lot worse than usual and I didn't supplement them. I know the genetics are there, the nutrition and weather just didn't let them reach that potential.

    If this ram really knocks your socks off I wouldn't be that concerned about him being a single. I might casually look at the multiples in the flock and see if there's one just as nice but if he's the best then go for it.
     
  3. May 22, 2019
    Baymule

    Baymule Herd Master

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    Well said!
     
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