Save the sheep
A gene bank
to protect the UK’s sheep breeds facing extinction because
of foot and mouth has been launched by scientists from
Leeds and York universities.
GeneBank will preserve the unique identities and diversity
of UK sheep by storing germplasm from endangered breeds.
The first target
– Herdwicks - are unique to Britain and now close to extinction,
because of infection with FMD and the pre-emptive killing
of tens of thousands of sheep around infection sites in
the Lake District.
contacted Professor Philip Gilmartin at Leeds, and Professor
Dianna Bowles of York for help, both known as breeders
of Herdwicks. They are working with reproductive biology
expert Dr Helen Picton from Leeds and other colleagues
from York and the Scottish Agricultural College, as well
as local vets and Herdwick breeders in Cumbria.
release for more information.