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Bowhill Farming - A clear financial benefit in using recorded rams

Bowhill Farming Limited, Scottish Borders - A clear financial benefit in using recorded rams

Every penny counts in a sheep enterprise that includes over 8,900 ewes and breeding values clearly play an important part in adding value to the sheep enterprises at the Buccleuch Estate farm at Bowhill.

There is a clear difference between the very top and bottom-performing rams, with the best ones delivering £5.26 per lamb more than lower-ranking rams. Over a ram’s working lifetime, this is easily worth an extra £1,000 per ram.

The top three rams provided the genetic potential to lift carcase weights by nearly 1 kg without increasing the days taken to reach slaughter weight. Progeny by the Charollais ram, Lowerye Troubadour, 18ZVY04539, provided by Neil Oughton, achieved 77% E and U carcases, against a flock average of just over 50%. This CT-scanned ram is in the top 1% of the breed for Gigot EBV and top 5% of the breed for his overall genetic merit.

Value of recorded rams at Bowhill Estate

  • Top sires for carcase merit = Generated an extra £5.26/lamb
  • Top sires for days to slaughter = Reduced finishing time by 20 days

Key message

Large differences in progeny values can be linked to the genetic merit of their sires. Breeding values help ram buyers identify the most profitable rams when they are selecting breeding stock.