Some aspects of the progeny testing of New Zealand Romney Marsh rams : being a thesis presented by "393" for the Animal Husbandry Section of the Master of Agricultural Science Degree.

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Massey University
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Present animal breeding methods were devised empirically. many of them having their beginnings far into pre-historic and pre-scientific times. Men found by actual experience that certain procedures generally gave more desirable results than other procedures although the basic reasons for this were unknown. Selection, or the choosing for breeding purposes of those animals deemed to be superior, has been the most important of these methods and indeed, fundamental to the application of any breeding system. the quality of all types of livestock as we know them to-day is largely the result of its consistent application as a breeding method. Selection has as its objective the identification and propogation of those superior individuals which are believed to be capable of reproducing their good qualities in their offspring. The major emphasis must be placed on the word "identification". It is in this word that are embodied the essential differences in the methods of application of selection to live-stock breeding. Three methods can be used for the identification of superior animals, by the individual merit of the animal, by the evaluation of its pedigree and finally by the evaluation of its offspring. [From Introduction]
Romney Marsh sheep, Sheep Breeding