Our Breeding Aims
You can be confident that the flock rams that you purchase from Illoura have been bred using a stringent selection process to ensure they will produce high-quality offspring for the commercial prime lamb market for many years.
We score and record the physical traits of all our lambs - in particular feet, conformation and wool quality. As an additional tool, we use the Lambplan performance recording service, which measures growth rates, muscling and leanness. Sheep are weighed at various ages and stages and then eye muscle and fat depth are measured by ultra sound. This raw data is fed into a national database to produce Australian Sheep Breeding Values and indexes for each sheep.
We test mate and evaluate 6-10 leading sires from around the country (AI program) each year to ensure that we are utilising the best genetics available within the breed.
An exciting development in the prime lamb industry is the use of genomics to help identify elite animals in the traits that are difficult to measure - eg: meat eating quality and meat nutritional quality (Omega 3 and Zinc levels). Illoura has submitted DNA samples of young sires to support this important research.
We aim to produce prime lamb sires with the following characteristics:
- optimum meat eating quality
- high fertility
- produce early maturing lambs
- no black fibre or horns
- dense white fleece
- minimum lambing attention
- strong constitution in all conditions
- clean wool-free face and legs to minimise grass seed problems