I've been assessing some of the recent pedigree litters we've had through our Stud, and trying to pinpoint where some of the inconsistent results are originating from. Which is nearly impossible to establish. But, I have some gut-feelings about some of the lines I've been attempting to work with not merging well with other lines. I seem to be getting the best results when at least one of the recent ancestors (ie. grandparent) is the same animal.
This is called line breeding, and is very common in the animal world - especially with rodents. It works best when you obtain a breeding trio (related male and 2 females) from the one breeder who has been shown to produce consistent results.
I didn't do this! lol. I took the long-way-round, and attempted to work with too many pedigrees from too many places, with too many different lines in the ancestry. While this has probably given the resulting babies better immune health - it hasn't done much for their coat.
So with this realization in mind, along with finally managing to pin-point which of my current lines WERE working consistently - we decided to bring home a new boar. Meet 'Hazelron Romeo'.
This boy is a stunning example of the texel breed. He isn't perfect - but he's damn near as close as I've seen so far. He shares ancestry with our Glenjolie Liam, English Rose Violet, English Rose Jasmine, Sirocco Arabella, Sirocco Tlalli, and Sirocco Tiiva. I can't wait to see how the consistency of the next few generations improves with his genetic input (provided my observations are correct!). If not, it'll be back to the drawing board!
(Texels might be one of the most visually stunning of the cavy breeds.... but they are a pain in the rear end to work with!)