Cattle Breeding Learning Centre

Summary of 3 recently updated Learning Centre Articles

Farmers Wish List

Lifespan is a recurring theme in the ‘Farmer Wish List’. When you use PLI as a selection criteria, 14.4% of the calculation is based on longevity. By selecting bulls with a higher PLI you reduce the risk of a poor longevity score.

Alongside lifespan, daughter fertility and geting cows back in calve quickly and easily is also high on a farmer’s wish list, with fertility making up 20.3% of the PLI calculation.

Select your individual criteria traits to be able to compare bull figures. Use PLI as a base selection criteria and then select your bulls from the top 100. Elite high genomic bulls will oen be in short supply, which will be reflected in a higher straw price. Look at the bulls that meet your selection criteria, but also represent value for money.

Direct Calving Ease Scale -3 to +3



Erdman is the best in breed for lifespan at + 0.7

Erdman is the best in breed for lifespan at + 0.7

Genomics - FAQ

Why are there so many new high genetic merit bulls?

With genomic selection now available, new Holstein sires graduated that would not have been available for another two or three years if we had continued to use the old sire evaluation system.  The advantage we gain from genomics is that we can now predict the genetic merit of our you animals at a much higher reliability earlier than we could with simply the use of traditional parent averages.  This gives dairy producers the potential to make significant genetic progress in their herds.


What is genomic selection?

Genomic selection is predicting the performance of an animal's offspring based on the DNA of that animal. Recent breakthroughs from industry-supported research have resulted in new tests that look at thousands of DNA markers of an individual bull or cow. The DNA markers of the individual animal are compared to the marker profiles of thousands of bulls and cows with millions of offspring with known performance for the various traits of interest. This allows an estimation of breeding values of an animal based on associations between DNA marker profiles and milk yield, Somatic Cell Score, Productive Life and other important traits.


Introducing Genomics

Genomics: A Revolutionary Tool

Genomics. It all started in 2004 when researchers sequenced the cattle genome. They used a Hereford for the project and discovered the bovine is made up of 30 chromosomes and three billion bases or nucleotides...those little letters.

To visualize this, picture a cell. Among other things, a cell contains those 30 chromosomes. The chromosomes consist of deoxyribonucleic acid, which is just a big fancy word for DNA. Looking closely at DNA, you can see it is made up of nucleotides - the As, Ts, Cs and Gs. The sequences of these little letters are what contain the instructions for making proteins. Proteins are the building blocks of life, ultimately determining the phenotype of animals.

Featured Bulls

Erdman 90%
PLI = 645

PLI = 624

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