Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Scur growth on 2009 ram lambs.

I learned a new word at my anthropology class last week. Morphology: in a nutshell, the shape, size, form, and structure of an organism or it's parts. I learned it in the context of bone studies, why not sheep horn studies as well? So here is the morphology of the scur growth on this years ram lambs.
These guys are all around the three month mark, a good time to be able to make an educated guess about how big those scurs will grow.

Hickory X Easter Day. Black gullie ram, no scur growth. This guy was smooth at birth, may be a full poll.

Eragon X Meadow. Fawn kat ram, tiny little scurs that will probably slough off and won't amount to much. Might be a full poll.

Eragon X Cleopatra. Small buttonish scurs on this wildly spotted, probable half poll.

Hickory X Carmela. Moorit gullie, larger buttons that I think will just keep breaking off. Probable half poll. I'm planning on keeping this guy, will see if I like how he's built after shearing next spring, and see if I like his numbers after micron testing.

Eragon X Chalmeaux. This guy had "knife blade scurs" that stayed at a modest size for a while, and are now starting to kick growth into higher gear. They are very flat and still small compared to horns. I predict they will be large substantial scurs, and of course I have no way of knowing if they will need trimming or not. Nice build on this spotted kat, he may be going to Tennessee this fall to be a flock sire and pass on that desired poll gene that he carries.

Eragon X Adriana. Full horns or aberrants on this few- spot- white kat. Amusing little story with this guy I'll be relaying in a future post.

Unk sire X Netty. Full horns or aberrants.


Sabrina Wille Erickson said...

Thanks for posting these. I always learn so much better from photos. Nice lambs!

kristi said...

I agree with Sabrina.....your posts are always educational & help me determine how many polled guys are coming along. My biggest scurs are on the spotted boys, though my kat ram looks just like the one you have pictures. Thanks Juliann!

Gail V said...

Hi Juliann
thanks for the pics. I got a mix of polled/scurred/horned myself this year! But I still don't quite get how some can have horns with a smooth polled dad.

Juliann said...

Thanks for the feedback, ladies.
Gail, I think the smooth polled Pp rams just happen to have inherited a series of loci that cause them to have very small scurs. And that they don't always pass down those alleles, or they are covered by the ewes genes.
Gallifrey and Malcolm were smooth polled, from them I got full horns, large scurs, and very few smooth polled rams. We have to figure in the ewe's contribution, too.