Although the Afrikaner and Black-headed Persian were used in several previous studies for upgrading with Karakul rams, this study looked at how fast progress could be made to produce good quality marketable pelts as well as producing ewe material to increase Karakul ewe numbers. Market requirements have also changed in the past years. After three generations of upgrading it was found that, especially in colour inheritance, faster progress was made as in previous studies with just a small percentage of spotted animals (1.3 % in the F₃-generation). All economic important pelt traits (pattern, hair quality, texture, lustre and curl type) improved significantly from the F₁ to the F₃ generation and it compares well with the control group (pure bred black and white Karakul). The type of rams that gave the best results with upgrading, were the less developed type with good hair quality and good pattern forming characteristics (watered-silk and shallow watered-silk). Pelt types improved from the F₁ which were under average and of poor quality to higher quality pelts which received above average prices on auctions for the F₂ and F₃ generations. It appears that the Afrikaner and Black-headed Persian can both be used with success in an upgrading program, all depending on what colour breeding (black or white) there is a need for.
Dissertation (MSc (Agric) (Animal Science))--University of Pretoria, 2007.