Monday, November 16, 2009

October Micron Reports

Click on a photo for its larger version.

I was excited to get my micron reports in the mail yesterday. Here are the results for the seven sheep I had tested. Each sample was scissored from midside, just behind the last rib.
I wasn't too surprised with any of them. While I don't think in terms of microns and numbers, the reports did not change the standing I had already given each sheep according to my own assessment of fleece characteristics. It feels validating to know the numbers support my personal preferences.

Bombarde had a higher micron than I expected. I thought long and hard about how that could be and suddenly I had an epiphany: Last spring's micron report was from a rather large lock sample that was dangling off his rump. This was likely snagged by Unicorn's horn in some tussle. I suspect that this sample was not the full spectrum of fiber I would have obtained had I scissored off the same lock. Perhaps some of the courser fiber remained anchored while the finer fiber ripped out? Probably. Although it is evident from both reports that Bombarde is very consistent. Maybe this is just the difference in his third fleece and his fourth fleece? I shudder to think of how naive I was of the whole micron sampling process back then. Whatever the reason, I appologize if the initial report was misleading. I understand now how carefully samples need to be collected and how they are difficult to compare unless they are collected in the same manner.
Arvada
4-2-08
Black Kat
Ash
4-30-09
Modified Moorit
Bombarde
3-22-06
Musket Kat
Courante
spring 09
Black Kat
January
4-29-09
Moorit Kat
Jchen
5-1-09
Black Kat
Roux
4-26-09
Musket

8 comments:

Juliann said...

Sabrina those are awesome numbers! I'd love to have numbers that low in my stock. Bombarde's are excellent for his age.
Great job!

Garrett808 said...

great numbers Sabrina! I'm glad Arvada is holding at 18 months! That's a good thing :)

Jchen looks wonderful also!

Jen and Rich Johnson said...

Bombarde's numbers are indeed very very nice for his age!

Rich

Michelle said...

Sabrina, I would certainly be delighted to have those numbers in my flock; excellent work!

Sabrina Wille Erickson said...

Thank you! Keep in mind, though, lots of my stock is not of my own breeding, but purchased from other flocks like ShelteringPines, Whitepine, S'More/UTS, Little Red Oak, etc. But I am so grateful to have these wonderful animals to use in my own program.

Thanks for the reassurance on Bombarde. I was suprised at the jump in afd, but the histo is still such a good shape and his other numbers are low-so that is still a good thing.

I am so pleased about Jchen's numbers. Both his parents have good looking numbers at 3+ so I feel he will mature well too.

I'm also glad I decided to send in Roux's sample-just to learn something. Currently his fleece has some good qualities. I was even a bit tempted to hang on to him. But I really disliked his dam's fleece, (she's already in my freezer) and what are the chances of getting a silk purse from a sow's ear? If he were a ewe lamb, I'd keep him to improve upon(especially because I know the little guy carries a copy of polled. But compared with Jchen and the sire Bombarde, I doubt he would mature as nicely.

Again, thanks for the kind words!

Michelle said...

Lots of your stock may be purchased, but YOU are the one with the good eye and sense to choose and purchase them!

Gail V said...

Hi Sabrina,
I was happy to see Ash measured up as well as he did! His mom is so swell, but I've never micron-ed her. January, well, she's okay, eh? And has many redeeming qualities. ;-)

Sabrina Wille Erickson said...

Hi Gail,
I think Ash has a good fleece. It certainly feels lovely. There are finer fleeces in my flock than his, but his polled genes are invaluable. If I am careful about who I pair him with, I think he can help me accomplish some goals.

January has MANY other redeeming qualities! Such as her glorious conformation and polled potential. And I have some fine rams that will cross with her nicely. Again, if I'm particular about who I put her with and which of her offspring I keep, I should be able to extract the good she offers and improve the fleece.

Just feeling her fleece sample again right now: it feels softer than the numbers suggest. She may micron test high, but at least she doesn't already feel like a brillo pad. I think she has potential.