| It is simple, but very important, to send
representative fiber samples for testing. The integrity of sampling, the
careful and proper selection of a sample, is the most critical factor involved
in measurement of fiber diameter in individual animals. The samples must be
taken at the middle of the side in the blanket location. The figure of the
sheep (center below) shows where breeders testing for uniformity in the fleece
would select both side and britch samples (each sample is one test).
The sample should be uniformly cut at the skin
level, which is the base of the staple, and should be no smaller than a
two-inch square in size. The sample should be kept in the staple configuration,
which is its natural growth state. It should not be brushed out, cleaned up, or
folded. Flat bladed shears or clippers are recommended as the safest tools to
use in the taking of samples.
Length of Fiber Sample
Maintaining the staple formation of the sample
submitted to the laboratory is important for a practical reason: The
two-millimeter sample used for measurement in the Laserscan is cut close to the
base of the staple to measure fiber that has grown side by side under the same
environmental conditions. These conditions include level of nutrition,
pregnancy, lactation, and stress caused by sickness or trauma. Recently shorn
animals with shorter staple lengths generally have not been exposed to highly
variable environmental conditions, so the variability of their fiber diameter
may be limited. Working with staple lengths shorter than one and a half inches
is problematic because the staple configuration breaks down and we are unable
to take an even cut across the base during sample preparation.
Once the two-inch square sample is taken, it should
be placed in a plastic sandwich-sized bag, and clearly labeled with the
- I.D. (Name and Registration or Eartag Number)
- Age (Date of Birth)
- Sex (Male, Female, Gelding/Ram, Ewe, Wether/Buck, Doe)
- Breed or Phenotype
- Date of Sampling (Identifies age of animal's fiber sample)
Please BE SURE to include the above information
for individual animal fiber diameter testing.
|Or click here for a
sample form you can print and send with your fiber sample. You can download the
page, get off the Net and print out as many forms as you'd like. Or you can
download the page onto your computer and have it available at all times. Be
sure to click once on the background of the sampling form to get your printer
to recognise the page prior to printing it out.
Pricing for Individual Animal Fiber Diameter Tests
Pricing information can be found in the applicable sample form.
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