Establishing a value proposition for future traits in a climate-changing world.


Increasing climate variability is as great a concern as increasing air temperatures forecast with climate change. The challenge for breeders is in identifying and selecting traits that are genetically correlated with environments into the future and/or difficult to manage away from their breeding nurseries. We report on studies targeting constitutively-expressed traits (e.g. increased rates of spike and grain-filling and increased coleoptile length) to establish their value proposition for increasing grain yield in future environments. The work supports the potential for higher rates of grain-filling and longer coleoptiles as traits where genetics are available now in pre-emptive selection in breeding programs. Further, there is not expected to be any cost associated with these traits in grain yield or quality, or in cooler, wetter seasons.

Bangyou Zheng
Bangyou Zheng
Data Scientist / Digital Agronomist

a research scientist of digital agriculture at the CSIRO.