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Signet Dag Scoring

Dagginess is a complex trait influenced by both genetics and a number of environmental factors including parasitic infection and diet.

Beef + Lamb New Zealand quote dagginess to be moderately heritable at about 30% meaning that genetic selection for reduced dag is possible, reducing the risk of flystrike and consequent issues.

To make genetic progress, trait variation must exist. To get the best estimate of genetic susceptibility to dag, we should aim to get at least 30% of lambs to have a dag score greater than zero.

 

How to score dag

The below 6 point scoring system is used around the world to score dag for genetic evaluations

Lambs must be scored consistently within a contemporary group. To achieve this dag should be scored by the same person within a flock and year.

It is important for management group to be recorded as this will effect evaluations. All lambs run together are one management group. Where a flock is split into multiple groups with different environmental influences e.g. show team and a more commercial group, we need to be informed to make accurate generic comparisons. You can do this by simply telling us group one, two or three etc.

It is recommended that dag score is recorded twice to improve accuracy of the trait:

  • First score soon after weaning (3/4 months)
  • Second score – 8 months

Adult sheep can be scored when good variation exists.

Lambs can be crutched between scoring events but all lambs should be treated the same to keep contemporary groups as large as possible. 

Genetic evaluation

Before breeding values can be developed, Signet requires ~2000 phenotypes per breed for the given trait. Until this number is reached, scores will be stored internally on our database.

 

Reporting dag to Signet

Dag should be reported electronically (Excel spreadsheet) using the format below:

SHEEP ID

SEX

BREED

FLOCKCODE

SYSTEM VARIABLE CODE

MEASUREMENT

MEASUREMENT DATE

MANAGEMENT GROUP

Sheep ID as registered with Signet

Gender as registered with Signet

Breed as registered with Signet

Flock as registered with Signet, typically comes before ID in flockbook number

For DAG = S508

Dag Score

(Whole Number)

Date score was given

Management group as explained on previous page

YER:1900001

M

HAMPSHIRE DOWN

YER

S508

1

30/01/19

1

YER:1900004

M

HAMPSHIRE DOWN

YER

S508

1

30/01/19

1

YER:1900003

F

HAMPSHIRE DOWN

YER

S508

4

30/01/19

1

YER:1900002

M

HAMPSHIRE DOWN

YER

S508

3

30/01/19

2

YER:1900005

F

HAMPSHIRE DOWN

YER

S508

6

30/01/19

2

For more information/clarification please contact Signet at [email protected] or call 02476 478829