The available genetic information for development of cashmere and mohair breeding programs is collated and areas where more data are required are discussed. Breeding objectives have been developed for the goats growing each of these fibres but the availablilty and reliability of parameters necessary for construction of selection indexes are variable. There is considerable genetic variation between animals for cashmere production. However, unfavourable genetic relationships indicate that selection for high down weight will be followed by increased diameter, and reductions in liveweight and fecundity and control of these will result in reduced improvement in down production. A strong genetic correlation indicates that indirect selection is possible and can lead to large savings in measurement costs through the use of 2 stage selection indexes. There is also significant genetic variation in mohair production among Angora goats but indexes will have to be designed to control fibre diameter and proportions of medullation and kemp.
Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume XV. Beef cattle, sheep and pig genetics and breeding, fibre, fur and meat quality., , 167–176, 1990
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