The New Zealand Merino Co.

Napier, New Zealand

The New Zealand Merino Co.

Napier, New Zealand

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Rosales Nieto C.A.,University of New England of Australia | Rosales Nieto C.A.,Western Australian Department of Agriculture and Food | Rosales Nieto C.A.,University of Western Australia | Ferguson M.B.,University of New England of Australia | And 10 more authors.
Theriogenology | Year: 2013

We studied the relationships among growth, body composition and reproductive performance in ewe lambs with known phenotypic values for depth of eye muscle (EMD) and fat (FAT) and Australian Sheep Breeding Values for post-weaning live weight (PWT) and depth of eye muscle (PEMD) and fat (PFAT). To detect estrus, vasectomized rams were placed with 190 Merino ewe lambs when on average they were 157 days old. The vasectomized rams were replaced with entire rams when the ewe lambs were, on average, 226 days old. Lambs were weighed every week and blood was sampled on four occasions for assay of ghrelin, leptin and ß-hydroxybutyrate. Almost 90% of the lambs attained puberty during the experiment, at an average live weight of 41.4 kg and average age of 197 days. Ewe lambs with higher values for EMD (P < 0.001), FAT (P < 0.01), PWT (P < 0.001), PEMD (P < 0.05) and PFAT (P < 0.05) were more likely to achieve puberty by 251 days of age. Thirty-six percent of the lambs conceived and, at the estimated date of conception, the average live weight was 46.9 ± 0.6 kg and average age was 273 days. Fertility, fecundity and reproductive rate were positively related to PWT (P < 0.05) and thus live weight at the start of mating (P < 0.001). Reproductive performance was not correlated with blood concentrations of ghrelin, leptin or ß-hydroxybutyrate. Many ewe lambs attained puberty, as detected by vasectomized rams, but then failed to become pregnant after mating with entire rams. Nevertheless, we can conclude that in ewe lambs mated at 8 months of age, higher breeding values for growth, muscle and fat are positively correlated with reproductive performance, although the effects of breeding values and responses to live weight are highly variable. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.


Rosales Nieto C.A.,University of New England of Australia | Rosales Nieto C.A.,Western Australian Department of Agriculture and Food | Rosales Nieto C.A.,University of Western Australia | Rosales Nieto C.A.,Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Nucleares | And 12 more authors.
Reproduction in Domestic Animals | Year: 2015

Contents: Greater depths of muscle are associated with better reproductive performance in ewe lambs, but, in adult ewes, reproductive performance also seems to vary with liveweight gain during the mating period. Therefore, in a large field study with Merino ewe lambs, we tested whether the relationships among eye muscle depth (EMD), fat depth (FAT) and reproductive performance depend on liveweight gain during the mating period. We selected lambs with a wide range in phenotypic values for depths of eye muscle (EMD) and fat (FAT) and assigned them to dietary treatments designed to achieve low (LOW, n = 244) or high (HIGH, n = 237) rates of liveweight gain during a 28-day mating period. The LOW treatment maintained live weight, whereas the HIGH treatment gained 179 ± 3.8 g/day (p < 0.001). From those ewe lambs that attained puberty, first oestrus was detected at live weight 37.8 ± 0.2 kg and age 232 days. The proportion of ewes that attained puberty increased with EMD (p < 0.01). Ewes from the HIGH treatment were more fertile (pregnant ewes per 100 ewes exposed to rams) and had a higher reproductive rate (foetuses in utero per 100 ewes exposed to rams; p < 0.001) than those from the LOW treatment. Fertility and reproductive rate were positively correlated with weight gain during mating as well as live weight at the start of mating, FAT and EMD (p < 0.05 to <0.001). We conclude that faster growth, due to either extra nutrition during mating or higher phenotypic potential for fat and muscle, will increase reproductive performance in ewe lambs mated at 8 months of age. © 2015 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.


Rosales Nieto C.A.,University of New England of Australia | Rosales Nieto C.A.,Western Australian Department of Agriculture and Food | Rosales Nieto C.A.,University of Western Australia | Rosales Nieto C.A.,Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Nucleares | And 12 more authors.
Animal Reproduction Science | Year: 2014

The onset of puberty depends on the attainment of critical body mass, so should also be affected by increases in the rate of accumulation of muscle and adipose tissue. Adipose tissue and reproduction are linked by leptin. For muscle, a link has not yet been identified, although one possibility is follistatin. We assessed the relationships among circulating concentrations of follistatin and leptin and the rates of growth and accumulation of muscle and fat during pubertal development in female sheep. We used 326 animals with known phenotypic values for live weight (LW), depths of eye muscle (EMD) and fat (FAT), and known breeding values at post-weaning age for body mass (PWT) and depths of eye muscle (PEMD) and fat (PFAT). Leptin concentration was positively correlated with values for EMD, PEMD, FAT, PFAT, LW and PWT (P<. 0.001), whereas follistatin concentration was negatively correlated with values for EMD and PWT (P<. 0.001), and PEMD (P<. 0.01) and FAT (P<. 0.05). Leptin concentration was negatively related to age and positively related to live weight at first oestrus and the proportion of females that attained puberty (P≤. 0.05), and to fertility and reproductive rate (P<. 0.01). Follistatin concentration was negatively related to live weight at first oestrus and to fertility (P<. 0.01) and reproductive rate (P<. 0.05). There were positive correlations (P<. 0.001) between muscle accumulation and leptin concentration, and between muscle accumulation and reproductive performance. We conclude that leptin and follistatin are probably both involved in effects of accelerated accumulation of muscle and adipose tissues on the onset of puberty. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.


McGregor B.A.,Deakin University | Butler K.L.,Australian Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries | Ferguson M.B.,The New Zealand Merino Co.
Small Ruminant Research | Year: 2013

In a range of animals, increasing mean fibre diameter (MFD) of fibre is associated with an increasing incidence of medullated fibres (Med). It would thus be expected that Med in mohair fleeces, from animals in a flock, would be related to the MFD of those fleeces. MFD of mohair is not the only dimensional attribute of fibres. Med in mohair is phenotypically and genetically related to the size of animals. This study examined how Med is related to dimensional properties of mohair over the lifetime of Angora goats and how the relationship varies with other lifetime factors. The relationship found is then examined to determine the extent that the relationship can be explained by variations in animal size of the goats. Measurements were made over 11 shearing periods on a population of Angora goats representing the current range and diversity of genetic origins in Australia, including South African, Texan and interbred admixtures of these and Australian sources. Records of breed, sire, dam, date of birth, dam age, birth weight, birth parity, weaning weight, live weight, fleece growth and fleece attributes were taken for castrated males (wethers). Animals' fleece-free live weight (FFLwt, kg) were determined for each goat at shearing time by subtracting the greasy fleece weight from the live weight recorded immediately prior to shearing. The average of the FFLwt at the start of the period and the FFLwt at the end of the period was calculated. Two restricted maximum likelihood (REML) models were developed to relate Med to MFD, staple length (SL) and other lifetime factors. One model allowed FFLwt in the model and the other excluded FFLwt. With the exception of the 1.5 years shearing, Med strongly increased with increasing MFD whether or not adjustments were made for FFLwt measurements. In particular Med increased by 2.0% for each 1. μm increase in MFD, with no adjustment for FFLwt measurements, and increased by 1.5% for each 1. μm increase in MFD, with adjustment for FFLwt measurements. Within each shearing interval increasing average FFLwt was associated with increasing incidence of Med in a similar way to that which has been previously reported without including MFD in the model. There was no evidence that SL needed to be included in the models for Med. Mohair grown by the goats of Mixed genetic background grew mohair which had a higher incidence of Med at ages 2 and 2.5 years and the trend was apparent in other shearing periods. We can conclude that there is both a large response of Med to live weight and a large response to MFD, and that these responses are largely functionally separate. While the response to MFD is in accord with earlier work, there is an unrelated and unreported physiological mechanism that favours the production of Med in larger Angora goats. Clearly, larger Angora goats are biologically different compared with smaller animals from the same flock, in ways that are not purely related to the allometrics of size. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.


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THE NEW ZEALAND MERINO COMPANY Ltd FORMERLY KNOWN AS MERINO GROWER INVESTMENTS Ltd and THE NEW ZEALAND MERINO COMPANY Ltd | Date: 2012-05-07

RAW FIBROUS MATERIALS; ANIMAL FIBRES, SHEEP FIBRE, FLEECE AND WOOL; WOOL FLOCKS, WOOL PACKS, WOOL TOPS, SHORN WOOL; RAW, TREATED, COMBED OR CARDED WOOL. YARNS AND THREADS FOR TEXTILES. TEXTILES AND TEXTILE GOODS, NOT INCLUDED IN OTHER CLASSES; WOVEN FABRICS, BLANKETS; BED CLOTHES AND BED COVERS; TABLE COVERS. CLOTHING, FOOTWEAR AND HEADGEAR. CARPETS, RUGS, MATS AND MATTING, OTHER MATERIALS FOR COVERING EXISTING FLOORS, WALL HANGINGS.


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Trademark
THE NEW ZEALAND MERINO COMPANY Ltd FORMERLY KNOWN AS MERINO GROWER INVESTMENTS Ltd and THE NEW ZEALAND MERINO COMPANY Ltd | Date: 2012-05-07

RAW FIBROUS MATERIALS; ANIMAL FIBRES, SHEEP FIBRE, FLEECE AND WOOL; WOOL FLOCKS, WOOL PACKS, WOOL TOPS, SHORN WOOL; RAW, TREATED, COMBED OR CARDED WOOL. YARNS AND THREADS FOR TEXTILES. TEXTILES AND TEXTILE GOODS, NOT INCLUDED IN OTHER CLASSES; WOVEN FABRICS, BLANKETS; BED CLOTHES AND BED COVERS; TABLE COVERS. CLOTHING, FOOTWEAR AND HEADGEAR. CARPETS, RUGS, MATS AND MATTING, OTHER MATERIALS FOR COVERING EXISTING FLOORS, WALL HANGINGS.


Trademark
THE NEW ZEALAND MERINO COMPANY Ltd and Merino New Zealand Incorporated | Date: 2011-01-11

Clothing, namely, shirts, pants, t-shirts, shorts, underwear, jumpers, jackets, suits, scarves, gloves; headgear, namely, hats; footwear.


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THE NEW ZEALAND MERINO COMPANY Ltd FORMERLY KNOWN AS MERINO GROWER INVESTMENTS Ltd and The New Zealand Merino Company Ltd | Date: 2012-05-15

Carpets; rugs; mats and matting; floor coverings; non-textile wall hangings.


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The New Zealand Merino Company Ltd | Date: 2010-11-08

Carpets; rugs; mats and matting; floor coverings; non-textile wall hangings.

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