Parameters of Breeds on the Conservation Priority List

Parameters of Livestock Breeds on the Conservation Priority List

Livestock breeds on the Conservation Priority List generally conform to certain genetic and numerical parameters:

  1. The breed is from one of the seven traditional U.S. livestock species: asses, cattle, goats, horses, pigs, rabbits, and sheep. Rabbit parameters are defined separately.
  2. The breed census satisfies numerical guidelines:
    • Critical: Fewer than 200 annual registrations in the United States and estimated global population less than 2,000.
    • Threatened: Fewer than 1,000 annual registrations in the United States and estimated global population less than 5,000.
    • Watch: Fewer than 2,500 annual registrations in the United States and estimated global population less than 10,000. Also included are breeds that present genetic or numerical concerns or have a limited geographic distribution.
    • Recovering: Breeds that were once listed in another category and have exceeded Watch category numbers but are still in need of monitoring.
    • Study: Breeds that are of genetic interest but either lack definition or lack genetic or historical documentation.
  3. The breed is a true genetic breed (when mated together, it reproduces the breed type).
  4. The breed has an established and continuously breeding population in the United States since 1925. Or, if imported or developed since 1925,
    • The foundation stock is no longer available.
    • Must be below global guidelines for inclusion (see #2).
    • Must have at least three breeding lines in the United States.
    • Must have at least twenty breeding females in the United States.
    • Must have at least five breeders in different locations in the United States.
    • Must have an association of breeders in the United States.
    • Must be contributing to the breed’s survival internationally. In general this means that:
      • the United States population is reciprocal to other international populations. Registry must be sanctioned by the mother organization so as not to be a dead-end for the breed, and breeding stock must be licensed according to the rules of mother organization;
      • or is an important and numerous population when compared to that in other countries;
      • or the non-United States populations of the breed are at risk geographically or politically.

Breeds not meeting all these criteria may be placed in the “Study” category and monitored.

Parameters of Rabbit Breeds on the Conservation Priority List

Rabbit breeds on the Conservation Priority List generally conform to certain genetic and numerical parameters.

  1. The breed census satisfies numerical guidelines:
    • Critical: Fewer than 50 annual registrations in the United States and estimated global population less than 500.
    • Threatened: Fewer than 100 annual registrations in the United States and estimated global population less than 1,000.
    • Watch: Fewer than 200 annual registrations in the United States and estimated global population less than 2,000. Also included are breeds that present genetic or numerical concerns or have a limited geographic distribution.
    • Recovering: Breeds that were once listed in another category and have exceeded Watch category numbers but are still in need of monitoring.
    • Study: Breeds that are of genetic interest but either lack definition or lack genetic or historical documentation.
  2. The breed is a true genetic breed (when mated together, it reproduces the breed type).
  3. The breed has an established and continuously breeding population in the United States since 1925. Or, if imported or developed since 1925,
    • The foundation stock is no longer available.
    • Must be below global guidelines for inclusion (see #1).
    • Must have at least five breeders in different locations in the United States.
    • The global population is threatened and the United States population is making a contribution to conservation of the breed.

Breeds not meeting all these criteria may be placed in the “Study” category and monitored.

 

Parameters of Poultry Breeds on the Conservation Priority List

Poultry breeds on the Conservation Priority List generally conform to certain genetic and numerical parameters.

  1. The breed is from one of the four traditional U.S. poultry species (chickens, ducks, geese, and turkeys).
  2. A bantam breed may be listed if there is no large fowl counterpart.
  3. The breed census satisfies numerical guidelines:
    • Critical: Fewer than 500 breeding birds in the United States, with five or fewer primary breeding flocks (50 birds or more), and estimated global population less than 1,000.
    • Threatened: Fewer than 1,000 breeding birds in the United States, with seven or fewer primary breeding flocks, and estimated global population less than 5,000.
    • Watch: Fewer than 5,000 breeding birds in the United States, with ten or fewer primary breeding flocks, and estimated global population less than 10,000. Also included are breeds with genetic or numerical concerns or limited geographic distribution.
    • Recovering: Breeds that were once listed in another category and have exceeded Watch category numbers but are still in need of monitoring.
    • Study: Breeds that are of interest but either lack definition or lack genetic or historical documentation.
  4. The breed is a true genetic breed (when mated together, it reproduces the breed type.)
  5. The breed has had an established and continuously breeding population in North America since 1925. Or, if imported or developed since 1925,
    • The foundation stock is no longer available.
    • Must meet numeric guidelines for inclusion.
    • Must have at least five breeders in different locations in the United States.
    • The global population is threatened and the United States population is making a contribution to conservation of the breed.

Breeds not meeting all these criteria may be placed in the "Study" category and monitored.

 


 

Conservation categories are based on the estimated number of breeding birds, males and females, and the number of breeding flocks. Given the vulnerability of poultry to predators, the number of flocks is important. "Conservation breeding flocks" are those of 50 birds and above.