Great effort and a large amount of time is spent sourcing the right genetics for the stock rams used in the Bearwood flocks. After purchase, all rams are genotyped for Scrapie and Myomax. The flocks are not Scrapie monitored but the majority of the rams used are Scrapie ARR/ARR, so if animals are being exported I have a good idea which ones will be ARR/ARR before the required blood tests for export are taken. Over half the stock rams are carriers of the Myomax gene, which is explained below.
The breeding of the stock rams for the Lleyn and Blue Texel flocks can be found on their respective pages
MyoMAX is a gene marker test which is used to identify sheep with better muscling and decreased fat. Sheep that are carriers of the MyoMAX gene have either 1 copy or 2 copies. 2 copy carriers are identified as MyoMAX Gold carriers.
What is the MyoMAX effect?
* Increases muscling – 5% increase with 1 copy, 10% with double copy.
* Reduces fat in carcass – 7% decrease with 1 copy, 14% with double copy.
* No effect on eating quality
MyoMAX results combined with performance figures can help you select animals with better carcass attributes. MyoMAX carriers can be found in animals in the top 10% for maternal ability and litter size within recorded flocks, so it is possible to achieve both goals simultaneously i.e., improve carcase quality without sacrificing maternal qualities.