In 2005 a ram lamb, Orange 100/05 (Noah) was born into the Wiltshire Horn Sheep Stud possessing one poll gene. His sire and dam were 100% purebred Wiltshire Horn. Noah was inspected by Geneticist Mr Scott Dolling.
This Polled ram is 100% full blood Wiltshire Horn. It has not been developed by cross breeding with any other breed and to our knowledge, there has never been a ram born like him.
Under instruction from Geneticist Scott Dolling, in 2007 Orange 100/05 (Noah) ram was mated to Wiltshire Horn ewes displaying smaller than normal horns or hornless characteristics.
The theory behind this is that the ewes also had one poll gene. The expectation was that 25% of their progeny would have two poll genes thus being true poll animals. The results were almost as expected and 19% of the lambs appeared to be true polls.
During 2008 we enlisted the services of Pfizer Animal Genetics to DNA test our visually polled animals. They also tested 107 horned ewes and rams.
On receiving the results in 2009, the test confirmed that Orange 100/05 (Noah) was the only original sheep with one poll gene and that the visually polled ewes were in fact hornless.
The 19% of Orange 100/05 (Noah) 2007 lambing were confirmed possessing poll genes inherited from Noah.
From the 2008 drop the first and only double poll Byarlea Poll Wiltshire ram lambs were produced by Noah’s progeny.
From 2009 onwards we have embarked on a compehensive DNA testing program with Pfizer Animal Genetics, New Zealand. With this evidence we can now accelerate our breeding program.
The continual development of the Wiltshire Horn Sheep Stud and the establishment of this new Poll Wiltshire breed are expected to have a great benefit for the lamb industry both in Australia and Overseas.