Research

 

Over the years Wicklow Cheviots have been involved in many experimental trials run by local universities and the local farm advisory body, Teagasc and in Northern Ireland including:

 

1983: in a trial at University College Dublin, Crosby showed that when bought off the hills and run on lowlands Wicklow Cheviot Ewes could have a litter size of up to 2 lambs per ewe

 

2000: Flanagan in Teagasc showed the Cheviot cross ewes performed equally well in intensive and extensive systems of lowland sheep production

 

2002: Dawson and Carson in Northern Ireland showed that Texel-sired lambs from Suffolk x Cheviot ewes had greater live-weight gains (on average 10%) than Texel-sired lambs from the other ewe crosses. This effect suggests that there is an optimum combination of breeds in a cross which affects the expression of vigour and thus determines performance. These findings have important implications for the breeding strategies of lowland flocks.

 

2004: Carson and co-workers in Northern Ireland found that Cheviot cross ewes mated to either Suffolk or Texel rams needed less labour at lambing than other hill cross ewes

 

2009: Speijers and co-workers in Northern Ireland found that lamb live weight at weaning was higher with Texel- and Cheviot- and Lleyn-sired lambs compared with Blackface- and Swaledale-sired lambs

 

2009: Keady and co-workers reported a very respectable 1.69 lambs reared per ewe to the ram across intensive and extensive lowland systems for Belclare x Cheviot ewes.