Breeding Focus

Register for Breeding Focus 2021

Breeding Focus 2021 - Improving Reproduction

Registrations are now open for the next Breeding Focus workshop which is being held in Armidale on the 11th and 12th of May 2021. Improving Reproduction in livestock, bees, crocodiles and aquaculture is the topic of this fourth workshop in the Breeding Focus series.

Purchase previous Breeding Focus publications


Breeding Focus 2018 - Reducing Heat Stress

The third workshop in the Breeding Focus series was held in Armidale in September 2018 and looked at reducing heat stress in livestock, plants and aquaculture. The physiological and economic consequences of heat stress and strategies to reduce the impact of heat stress were presented.

Topics presented at the workshop have been published as a book "Breeding Focus 2018 – Reducing Heat Stress” which is available for purchase. Abstracts of the papers can be downloaded as can individual chapters.

Chapter 1 Climate, Weather and Water Services for Livestock Industries Jaclyn N. Brown and Alister Hawksford

Chapter 2 Genetic sensitivity of beef cattle to environmental variation Roberto Carvalheiro, Ben J. Hayes, Lucia G. Albuquerque and Stephen Moore

Chapter 3 Towards breeding for heat tolerance and resilience in beef cattle Gene Wijffels, Megan Sullivan, Stephen Anderson, Sally Stockwell, Russell McCulloch, Suzie Briscoe, Joseph Olm, Judy Cawdell-Smith and John Gaughan

Chapter 4 Heat stress impacts and responses in livestock production Rachelle Meyer, Ann-Maree Graham and Richard Eckard

Chapter 5 Summer mortality in molluscs: the genetic basis for resilience and susceptibility Brett P. Shiel, Ira R. Cooke, Nathan E. Hall, Nicholas A. Robinson and Jan M. Strugnell

Chapter 6 Addressing heat stress in pome fruit Rebecca Darbyshire, Ian Goodwin, Lexie McClymont and Susanna Turpin

Chapter 7 The challenge of improving tolerance to heat stress in livestock species Kim L. Bunter, Bethany Bowring and Alison M. Collins

Chapter 8 A tool to breed for heat tolerant dairy cattle Thuy T. T. Nguyen, Josie B. Garner and Jennie E. Pryce

Chapter 9 Turning the heat up on independent culling in crop breeding Wallace A. Cowling and Li Li

Chapter 10 Breedingfor reduced seasonal infertility and reduced response to heat stress in sows and boars Annika M. G. Bunz, Kim L. Bunter, Rebecca Morrison, Brian G. Luxford and Susanne Hermesch




Breeding Focus 2016 - Improving Welfare

The second in the Breeding Focus series was held in Armidale in September 2016 and brought together participants and speakers from a range of species and backgrounds to consider how welfare can be enhanced through management and selective breeding. Topics presented at the workshop have been published as a book "Breeding Focus 2016 – Improving Welfare” which is available for purchase. Abstracts of the papers are available as a pdf and individual papers can also be downloaded.

Chapter 1 How can we measure welfare of animals on farms?   Andrew Fisher

Chapter 2 Breeding for welfare traits in dairy cattle    Jennie E. Pryce, Mary Abdelsayed and Michelle Axford

Chapter 3 Improving the temperament of Australian cattle and implications for animal welfare    Sam F. Walkom

Chapter 4 Selection for immune competence in beef breeding programs modelled on potential reductions in the incidence of bovine respiratory disease    Sonja Dominik and Brad C. Hine

Chapter 5 Breeding polled cattle in Australia    Natalie K. Connors and Bruce Tier

Chapter 6 Farming dinosaur cousins: the unique welfare challenges of farming
    Sally R. Isberg

Chapter 7 Breeding for improved welfare of growing pigs    Susanne Hermesch

Chapter 8 Breeding sows better suited to group housing    Kim L. Bunter, Craig R.G. Lewis and Scott Newman

Chapter 9 Using genomic prediction for footrot resistance in sheep based on case-control industry data    Cecilia Esquivelzeta-Rabell, Kim L. Bunter, Daniel J. Brown, Mark Ferguson

Chapter 10 Livestock breeding and welfare– reflections on ethical issues    Imke Tammen

Breeding Focus 2014 - Improving Resilience

Breeding Focus 2014This international forum, hosted by AGBU and CSIRO, was developed to extend opportunity for exchange between industry, breeders and researchers in the livestock and aquaculture industries. Genetic improvement of resilience was the topic for Breeding Focus 2014, which was the first of an ongoing series of Breeding Focus.

Topics presented at the workshop have been published as a book “Breeding Focus 2014 – Improving resilience” which can be purchased from AGBU. Abstracts of the papers are available as a pdf and individual papers can also be downloaded.

Chapter 1 Breeding disease resilient pigs    Susanne Hermesch

Chapter 2 Inferring genetic resilience of animals to infectious pathogens – opportunities and pitfalls    Andrea B. Doeschl-Wilson and Graham Lough

Chapter 3 On-farm measures to monitor the health and immune status of pigs    Alison M. Collins

Chapter 4 Immune competence in livestock    Brad C. Hine, Bonnie A. Mallard, Aaron B. Ingham and Ian G. Colditz

Chapter 5 Performance and resilience of poultry in Thailand    Siriporn Tongsiri and M. Gilbert Jeyaruban

Chapter 6 Breeding Sydney rock oysters and its effects on resilience    Wayne A. O’Connor, Michael C. Dove, Emma L. Thompson, Laura M. Parker, Pauline M. Ross and David A. Raftos

Chapter 7 Breeding barramundi for resilience in the face of global climate change    Dean R. Jerry, Carolyn S.K. Smith-Keune, Lauren Hodgson and Jeremy van der Waal

Chapter 8 Genetic variation of handling resilience of Tasmanian Atlantic salmon affected by amoebic gill disease (AGD)    Richard S. Taylor, Peter D. Kube, Brad S. Evans and Nick G. Elliott

Chapter 9 Resilience, tolerance, robustness and genotype x environment interaction in Merino sheep breeding    Sonja Dominik and Andrew A. Swan

Chapter 10 Robustness as a breeding objective for sheep in New Zealand    Mark J. Young and Beverley C. Thomson

Chapter 11 Breeding for resilience and resistance in Merino sheep     Sam F. Walkom and Daniel J. Brown


For further information, please contact Susanne (

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