Breeding & Quality Production Controls
You will complete TWO topics on this inquiry page. Scroll down to find the learning resources you will use. Keep track of the Need to Do tasks for these topics in your Livestock2 3040 Learning checklist.
What requirements guide quality livestock production?

An understanding of basic genetic principles are important to improvements in food production and supply. Livestock producers, breeders and caregivers continuously assess livestock for potential as high quality breeding animals as well as ability to produce marketable, high quality offspring. Identification and record-keeping provide quality controls and the ability to track growth, treatment, care and breeding histories. In this inquiry, you consider how heredity and genetics affect characteristics and analyze livestock reproductive cycles, practices and technologies. You also explore quality management practices.

Know livestock genetics & breeding
Breeding systems rely on knowledge of genetics and heredity. The use of quality breeding stock reduces health risks and increases production efficiency. However, overselection of certain characteristics can also result in serious animal welfare concerns. What two factors do you think are most important when selecting livestock to breed?

Need To Know
need to know Explore basic information about heredity and genetics.
Genetics & heredity in beef cattle   |   Genetics & heredity in sheep
need to do Find out about different breeding practices and systems.
Selection & breeding systems
need to do Explore reproductive cycles, pregnancy and birth in livestock.
Reproductive processes in beef cattle   |   Reproductive processes in sheep
need to do Get information on reproductive technologies.
Reproductive technologies
Need To Do
need to do Explore how an understanding of basic genetics can help you understand animal health and welfare issues and advantages.
Explore genetics
need to do Construct cycle diagrams that describe main processes in estrous, gestation and birth cycles.
Consider breeding practices
Introduction Use these graphic organizers to help you complete the learning tasks.
Triple T-Chart  |   T-Chart  |   Cycle Diagram
Introduction When you are finished the learning tasks, respond to the reflection question.
Reflect Three

These weblinks will help you complete the learning tasks.

Read an interesting review of animal welfare and genetics in The role of breeding and genetics in the welfare of farm animals on the Animal Frontiers magazine website.

Explore Temple Grandin’s perspective in Genetics and Animal Welfare.

Find out about the risks of inbreeding in Inbreeding in Cattle.$foragebeef/frgebeef.nsf/all/ccf1007/$FILE/

Find out more about breeding sheep in Breeding Systems from Sheep 201.

Find out more in Some Ideas about Crossbreeding Sheep.

Find information in The Estrous Cycle of Cattle.

Find out more in Estrus Detection in Cattle on The Beef Site.

Find more detailed information about anatomy and the estrus cycle in Reproductive Anatomy and Physiology of the Cow.

Get an overview of reproductive factors and anatomy in Beef Bull Fertility.

Find out more in Reproductive Fertility in Herd Bulls on The Beef Site. 

Find more detailed information about anatomy and the breeding soundness in Reproductive Anatomy and Physiology of the Bull.

Find out about potential calving problems in Injuries and Diseases of Beef Cattle Associated with Calving

Find more information in Out-of-Season Breeding Alternatives for Sheep.

Get detailed information about breeding and reproductive processes of sheep in Breeding.

Find out more in Ontario Sheep’s Reproduction and Lambing.

Find in-depth information in Sheep and Goat Management in Alberta – Reproduction.

Find out more in Reproduction in the

Know livestock quality controls
Livestock quality controls help ensure consumers receive quality, safe products. These controls also ensure the safety, health and welfare of the animals. Why are quality management controls important when raising, growing and finishing healthy animals?

Need To Know
need to know Find out why selection criteria, performance information and judging standards are important to the development of the livestock industry.
Livestock quality control practices
need to know Consider why record-keeping and identification are important to animal welfare. Identification & traceability
Need To Do
Introduction Assess how Codes of Practice support quality management practices.
Support quality management practices
Introduction Explore identification and traceability strategies.
Investigate identification & traceability strategies
Introduction Use this graphic organizer to help you complete the learning task.
Bubble Map
Introduction When you are finished the learning tasks, respond to the reflection question.
Reflect Four
weblinks These weblinks will help you complete the learning tasks.

Get a good overview of judging classes, conformational features and priorities for beef cattle and sheep in From the ground up…The basics of livestock judging.

Find articles that provide information on breed and market classes and judging for livestock on The Judging Connection website.

Find information on selection criteria in Beef Cattle Selection Handbook.

Explore detailed explanations about judging and selection criteria for livestock in Livestock Judging Manual for 4-H Seniors and Experienced Judges.

Find a detailed discussion about sheep identification in Animal Identification and Record Keeping.

Find examples of accurate and verifiable record-keeping forms used for sheep.

Get a good overview of record-keeping options in Keeping Production Records for the Beef Herd.

Get detailed information about the Canadian Sheep Identification Program, including guidelines, legislation, brochures and forms.

Find examples of Canadian Sheep Identification Program approved tags.

Get links to different resources on traceability for sheep.

Find an overview in RFID Tags in the Canadian Cattle Industry. 

Find information about sheep tagging in Radio Frequency Information Systems.

Find information and forms about traceability for beef cattle on the Traceability in Alberta website.$Department/deptdocs.nsf/all/trace14202

Find information and forms about traceability for sheep on the Traceability in Alberta website.$Department/deptdocs.nsf/all/trace14214