University of California

A macroscopical analysis of the fleeces of four Romney rams


J. F. Wilson

Author Affiliations

J. F. Wilson was Assistant Professor of Animal Husbandry and Associate Animal Husbandman in the Experiment Station.

Publication Information

Hilgardia 3(19):583-594. DOI:10.3733/hilg.v03n19p583. February 1929.

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Improvement in character of fleece in any flock is largely dependent upon the judicious selection of rams. It is necessary to assume that the fleece character possessed by the sire will in some measure be transmitted to the offspring. In judging rams for quantity and quality2 of fleece, it is necessary, therefore, to make direct comparisons, and to assume that the offspring of a ram possessing an excellent fleece will have better fleeces than the offspring of another ram possessing a fleece less desirable.

Judging the excellence of a fleece by simple optical examination has been in the past the only method employed by the practical breeder. This method of judging is satisfactory in so far as it concerns the animal and its body characters, but when used for judging fleeces, it is subject to certain very definite limitations and often to serious error. It is quite impossible to judge optically, with any satisfactory degree of accuracy, the variation in the diameter of the fiber; yet uniformity of diameter is one of the characters most closely correlated with the spinning properties of wool. Similarly, judging the general fineness of wool with the eye may be subject to large error.

Literature Cited

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[2] Shepherd Boy. Modern sheep; breeds and management. 1907. Chicago, Ill: American Sheep Breeder Co. 333p.

[3] Hawkesworth Alfred. Australasian sheep and wool 1920. p.594. p. 91 fig. 11 plates. Wm. Brooks and Company, Ltd., Sydney, Australia

[4] Matthews J. Merritt. The textile fibers. 1924. 4th ed. New York: John Wiley and Sons Inc. 1053p. 411 fig.

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[6] Student. The probable error of a mean. Biometrika. 1908. 6:1-25.

[7] Wilson J. F. Macroscopical detection of the medullated wool fiber. Science. 1928. 1742:512-513. DOI: 10.1126/science.67.1742.512-b [CrossRef]

Wilson J. 1929. A macroscopical analysis of the fleeces of four Romney rams. Hilgardia 3(19):583-594. DOI:10.3733/hilg.v03n19p583
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