Cashmere production and fleece attributes associated with farm of origin, age and sex of goat in Australia

McGregor, B. A. and Butler, K. L. 2008, Cashmere production and fleece attributes associated with farm of origin, age and sex of goat in Australia, Australian journal of experimental agriculture, vol. 48, pp. 1090-1098, doi: 10.1071/EA06308.

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Title Cashmere production and fleece attributes associated with farm of origin, age and sex of goat in Australia
Author(s) McGregor, B. A.ORCID iD for McGregor, B. A.
Butler, K. L.
Journal name Australian journal of experimental agriculture
Volume number 48
Start page 1090
End page 1098
Total pages 9
Publisher CSIRO Publishing
Place of publication Collingwood, VIC.
Publication date 2008
ISSN 0816-1089
Summary Differences in cashmere production and fleece attributes associated with farm of origin, age and sex were quantified for commercial Australian cashmere goat enterprises. From 11 farms in four states, 1147 does and 97 wethers were monitored, representing 1- to 13-year-old goats. Individual clean cashmere production ranged from 21 to 389 g, with a mean ± standard deviation value of 134 ± 62 g. The mean cashmere production of 2-year-old does from different farms varied from 69 to 225 g and averaged 141 g. Mean ± s.d. greasy fleece weight was 394 ± 123 g, clean washing yield was 90.8 ± 4.1%, clean cashmere yield 33.4 ± 9.4%, cashmere fibre diameter 16.4 ± 1.6 µm, fibre curvature 48 ± 8.7 degrees/mm and staple length 8.7 ± 2.1 cm. There were large, commercially significant differences between farms for clean cashmere weight, mean fibre diameter and other attributes of cashmere. These were much larger than the effects of age and sex. Farm and age accounted for 42 to 67% of the variation in clean cashmere production, mean fibre diameter, fibre curvature, staple length and clean washing yield. Farm of origin affected clean cashmere yield, accounting for 24% of the variation. Sex of the goats had only a minor effect on the staple length of cashmere. The responses to age of clean cashmere weight, mean fibre diameter and the inverse of fibre curvature are very similar. Generally, cashmere production and mean fibre diameter increased with age. For the majority of farms, cashmere fibre curvature declined in a curvilinear manner with increases in age of goat. There were large differences in cashmere staple length from different farms, with means ranging from 7 to 12 cm. Between 1 and 2 years of age, the staple length of cashmere demonstrated a constant proportional increase. At ages older than 2 years, staple length either declined or increased by less than 1 cm with age, depending on the farm of origin. This study demonstrates that there are large gains in productivity that can be achieved from Australian cashmere goats. A better understanding of on-farm factors that influence cashmere production would enable all producers to optimise their production systems.
Language eng
DOI 10.1071/EA06308
Field of Research 070203 Animal Management
Socio Economic Objective 970107 Expanding Knowledge in the Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2008, CSIRO Publishing
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Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Centre for Material and Fibre Innovation
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