From the FOREWARD of "Merino Sheep Breeding"
I have known the author since the early 1960s when he was the sheep and wool officer with the Victorian Department of Agriculture at Bairnsdale in the East Gippsland region. Murray was involved with my family's merino sheep breeding operation in Omeo, offering valuable advice on progressing the capability of the merino on that environment. He became the catalyst for the registration of the Bindawarra and Toland Poll merino studs.
Murray is a practical scientist with a hands on and common sense approach to sheep breeding. He recognized that the environment had a great influence in the expression of the phenotypes in sheep in different areas. The Gippsland type of merino was stamped under Murray's tutelage, that type being a long stapled, free growing, heavy cutting, white woolled merino that was resistant to fleece rot and could cope with the environmental extremes common in that region. These features were honed from the sheep production trials instigated by Murray that became important demonstrations of sheep breeding skills and attributes. The long running Gippsland Wether Trial is a lasting testament to his driving innovation.
The author is a well-known sheep breeding consultant now living in Hamilton, Victoria, with many contributions to rural publications and scientific papers spanning more than 50 years.
Philip C. Toland
President Australian Association of Stud and Merino Breeders 2013-2015