THE EARLY YEARS OF TEXELS IN CANADA

Authors Gordon and Reta Young- Thorndale, Ontario, Canada.

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1980- 1985
  • Involvement with many universities and research groups from Australia, New Zealand, U.S.A.. Canada, Germany, France. Denmark and others. Had regular visitations and sharing of information. Had considerable attention from Canadian national
  • media and this became a problem in the future o1' the operation. Received considerable information from the Danes on Texels and their regulations on exporting.
  • Dr. Armstrong visited Denmark - met with senior faculty at Royal Danish Veterinary University. Danish Agriculture officers and the Danish Sheep Association - the decision there was to proceed with importation of embryos.
  • We had several discussions with Health of Animals Ottawa, very lukewarm at first they had no policy on ovine embryos and invited us to write a protocol covering importation. They accepted our proposal.
  • Ottawa stalled continually - said they couldn't get approval from U.S.D.A. eventually we discussed our application with U.S,D.A, and they had no problem - still no action from Ottawa.
1986 - 1990
  • Finally after repeated follow ups we received an O.K. with some restrictions that may or may not be applied.
  • Formed a company Nissouri Livestock Genetic Research Ltd. Busy selling shares along with keeping up with regular activity - planning for selection of sheep and flushing.
  • Negotiations on leasing, ewes and rams - setting up a quarantine station - finding a location for flushing and much more. Also trying to fit Danish arrangements into Dr. Armstrong's schedule.
  • April 1987 I traveled to Denmark to select sheep, wrap up details with Danish Agriculture and Danish Sheep Association - hire a veterinary - set up quarantine - arrange facility for flushing - had some problems with farmers who had some difficulty with a New Zealand flushing program which went off the rails -- they were skeptical about us - some of these ewes and rams used by the Kiwis were imported live by U.S.A. in 1986. Also the N.Z. Lamb X. L. exportation of a plane load of Texels had happened in late 1986. This operation had also soured a number of farmers. Hired a former president of the sheep association along with the veterinary to look after trucking and startup of quarantine station.
  • Aug. 1st 1987 -- sheep entered the quarantine station. Ottawa advised us that they would not accept Danish blood tests but all testing would be done in Scotland. Also the range of tests had to cover nearly every possible sheep disease - the cost $240 per head. 22 ewes and 6 rams entered the station - the Danes also continued their blood testing at no cost to us. From the beginning of the schedule we were concerned about the fertility of the rams for mid Sept. We were assured by everyone including our contacts at the Vet. University that Texel rams would be fertile by early Au(, . in Denmark because of their northern latitude.