Behind as per usual in posting here. We spent a week in October working with the USDA NAGP to collect and freeze semen from our rams. Some will be used later this year in our flock as part of their experiment in fine tuning the timing for insemination of synchronized ewes using a trans cervical procedure instead of a surgical one. Some will go into the national gene bank for preservation of existing genetic diversity.
There are 8 clusters or bloodlines of Black Welsh Mountain sheep in North America. Seven exist in the US. One exists only in Canada and Canada shares 2 clusters wit the US. Previous collections only resulted in donations from 3 of the US lines. With the collections done this year we now have in the gene bank semen from all but one of the US lines.
We still don’t have any from the one Canadian only bloodline and that won’t happen until the changes to allow importation of breeding sheep and semen are approved.
It was a very long week but we ended up with nearly 500 doses of stored semen. Each one is over 2 surgical insemination doses or 1 trans-cervical dose.