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KY Master Small Ruminant ClassesKY Master Small Ruminant Genetics

KY Master Small Ruminant Genetics

Interested in getting this for FREE? Check out the KSU Farmer Education Grant

Dr. Andrew Weaver, North Carolina State University, breaks down many aspects of small ruminant genetics from breed traits to genomics. After this class, you will know the qualitative traits of many breeds and how to select for the traits most important to your operation.

You get lifetime access with registration as long as you are a current KGPA/KSWPA member.


This courses is best suited for small ruminant producers:

  • who have been in the business for more than five years

  • already keep or are planning to keep production records 

  • already participating or planning to participate in the National Sheep Improvement Program

  • ready to start making breeding stock selections based on genetic data

  • ready to sell breeding stock with genetic data

  • want to start or enhance a breeding program to improve specific qualitative traits

  • are ready to enhance the genetics within their flocks/herds. 


Head Shot.jpg

Andrew Weaver

Extension Specialist, Small Ruminants

North Carolina State University

  • B.S. in Animal Science in 2015, Michigan State University

  • M.S. in 2017 at Virginia Tech

  • PhD at West Virginia University

Currently Assistant Professor and Extension Small Ruminant Specialist

Sample Video

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This course includes:

Goat and Sheep Breeds-  describes traits of the most common sheep, and meat and dairy goats available in the United States.

Purebred Systems in Small Ruminants-  explains the two main aspects of purebred breeding systems, as well as the pros and cons of each.

Crossbreeding Systems in Small Ruminants- defines crossbreeding and explains how we can use this system to improve terminal traits in our small ruminants.

Introduction to Small Ruminant Genetics-  explains the importance of using genetic tools to increase production of our small ruminants.

Part 2: Qualitative Traits-  explains the most common qualitative traits we see in small ruminant genetics, and how we can test for elimination or prevention of the diseases in our flocks.


Part 3: Quantitative Traits- defines quantitative genetic traits and heritability, and how EBVs are calculated.

Introduction to Small Ruminant Selection Programs-  explains how to identify selection goals, understand genetic progress, and assess your current production level.

Selection Priorities in Small Ruminants- explains how to determine the priority of economically relevant traits in small ruminant selection programs.

Selection Tools- explains how to use selection tools to identify genetic differences within economically relevant traits.

Understanding EBVs-  explains the differences in breeding values available to small ruminants and what they mean for terminal, maternal, and wool traits.

Sourcing Breeding Stock-  provides information on available ways to source quality breeding stock.

Validation of Genetic Tools-  validates the use of genetic tools by explaining results of two research projects.

Genomics- explains how to use genomics as an emerging technology in sheep selection programs.

Thank You to Our Partners

University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension
KY Proud
Kentucky State University
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