Conservation Breeding Principles

The following list is excerpted from Jeff Bragg’s article, Population Genetics in Practice.” :

  1. Maintain balance of sires and dams
  2. Avoid incestuous matings (e.g., closer than first cousins)
  3. Understand and monitor coefficient of inbreeding (COI)
  4. Pay attention to the trend in COI
  5. Know the genetic load but don’t obsess over it
  6. Conserve sire and dam-line diversity
  7. Maintain high generation time
  8. Avoid repeat breedings
  9. Ensure sibling contribution
  10. Monitor fitness indicators (e.g., fertility and litter size)
  11. Avoid unfit breeding stock
  12. Monitor population growth
  13. Attempt founder balancing (in coordination with other breeders)