Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


The objectives of this study were: (1) To develop a personal profile of the membership of the Louisiana Sheep Producers Association (LSPA). (2) To determine the relationship between flock management practices followed by members of LSPA and their purpose for producing, size of operation, age and education. (3) To determine the educational needs in sheep production. The data were obtained by a mail questionnaire sent to 275 of the 304 members of LSPA. A total of 189 members engaged in sheep production returned the surveys. Chi-square, analysis of variance and correlation analysis was used to determine statistically significant relationships (.05 level of significance). Results showed the average LSPA member was 44 years old, had some college (55 percent), maintained 20 ewes, 1 ram, and 23 lambs, had 12 years of experience, devoted 17 acres to sheep, owned/operated a combination registered/commercial flock, felt club/feeder lamb production was his primary purpose, had a technical/manual occupation, felt fellow sheep producers were his best source of information, felt he needed information on flock health, and considered parasites, footrot and reproduction his major problems. Findings of this study parallel previous studies on adoption of agricultural practices. Specialized operations generally have high levels of adoption. Seedstock (purebred ram/ewe) producers adopted more practices followed by club/feeder and market lamb producers. Size of operation was directly related to level of adoption. The larger operations (over 30 ewes) adopted more management practices. Most agricultural practice-adoption studies have shown an inverse relationship between age and level of adoption (younger adopt more practices). This study differs in that older producers (51 and above) had the highest level of adoption. Adoption levels were very similar for the different levels of education in this study. Of the management practices surveyed, eight were adopted by over 80 percent, 27 by over 50 percent, while eleven were adopted by less than 50 percent of the LSPA members. Fellow sheep producers and magazines were primary sources of information. Flock health, nutrition and reproduction were areas of expressed concern. Results indicated four areas of low management levels: pasture and forages; genetics and reproduction; health; and marketing (wool).