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UK April 2018 Genetic Evaluations

There’s a dead-heat at the top of the new genomic sire rankings which – combined with four new bulls in the top 10, 10 newcomers in the top 20 and the introduction of three newly developed genetic evaluations. The popular Rubicon son Mr Rubi-Agronaut holds on to the #1 ranking of the High Genomic Young Sires in the UK, with an index which features high milk quality (Predicted Transmitting Ability (PTA) +0.24% fat and +0.10% protein) and the highest Type Merit, at +3.12, amongst the top £PLI bulls. Argonaut is tied with newcomer ABS OUTBACK (Spector) stands out for low feed costs for Maintenance (-2) as well as a strong rating for the newly released Lameness Advantage at +2.3. Rounding out the tops sires is another newcomer ABS Crimson, who also a Spectre son and has 784 GPLI. Crimson is a production specialist, transmitting 952kg milk with an incredible 49.7kg fat.

In the list of international daughter proven sires is Mocon on top, this Bookem Morgan son has 689 PLI and has just 5 more PLI points than Gen-I-Beq Lavaman, a Long-Langs Oman Oman son with 684 PLI. Place 3 and 4 have both 654 PL.

What’s new in Holstein indexes this month?

Three new genetic evaluations – Lameness Advantage, Calf Survival and the Dairy Carcase Index – have been launched by AHDB Dairy this April, and are now published for bulls who either have progeny in the UK, or who have had their genotype submitted for assessment by AHDB Dairy.

Details and scales for the indexes are as follows:

New evaluation Scale

The Calf Survival (CS) PTA has been developed using close to three million animal records from the British Cattle Movement Service (BCMS), which show that calves of some sires are more likely to survive their first 300 days of life than those sired by other bulls. CS has not yet been incorporated into the UK’s national breeding index, Profitable Lifetime Index (£PLI), but is planned for inclusion later this year. A stand-alone list for CS is published on the AHDB Dairy website.

CS is published on a scale of about -5 to +5. It represents survival between tagging and 300 days. Each percentage point represents a 1% improvement in survival of a bull’s progeny.

The Lameness Advantage (LA) is calculated directly from on-farm lameness incidents recorded by the milk recording organisations, NMR and CIS. This information is combined with existing data for locomotion and feet and legs, together with bone quality scores and digital dermatitis records from the National Bovine Data Centre (NBDC) type classification system. LA will be incorporated into £PLI later this year. A stand-alone list for LA is also published on the AHDB Dairy website.

LA is published on a scale of about -5 to +5. For each percentage point, 1% fewer daughters go lame.

The Dairy Carcase Index (DCI) is primarily based on average daily carcase gain and carcase conformation calculated from weight and age data from most major abattoirs in the UK. The DCI will be of particular interest to dairy farmers producing youngstock for the beef supply chain or rearing their own beef. The DCI is not included in £PLI. A stand-alone list for DCI is published on the AHDB Dairy website.

DCI is published on a scale of about -5 to +5. For each percentage point, an improvement is predicted in both carcase conformation and average daily carcase gain in a bull’s progeny.


Source: AHDB Dairy


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