Calving 2023 is well and truly upon us! Calves are hitting the ground left, right and centre, gene Ireland straws are flying out the door and its nearly time to start thinking about breeding.
More and more farmers are looking for genotyped bulls, not only for the purpose of fulfilling their scheme requirements but for their peace of mind. By buying a genotyped bull , buyers are confident that the bull they are getting matches what it says on the tin – its parent verified!
Benefits of genotyping:
Sire and dam verification – this is the cheapest insurance for pedigree breeders. By proving that a bull is correctly sired this can bring confidence to buyers and a safety net for the seller. The average sire error rate in the national herd is 10% – this means that 1 in 10 calves in the country are incorrectly registered to a bull that is not their sire. By registering a pedigree bull incorrectly this can lead to complications down the line without having proof of parentage.
Increased reliability of calving difficulty – the number one thing that a buyer looks for in a bull is the calving difficulty. Genotyping increases the accuracy of the calving difficulty on a bulls Eurostar Index or Dairy Beef Index (DBI). Analysing the DNA of the bull helps us to get a better idea of what the expected calving difficulty will be, while confirming parentage can eliminate the risk of buying a bull that is from a hard calving line – a double win.
Increased accuracy of the Eurostar index or DBI – Genotyping allows us to see the genetic merit of a bull, how his sons and daughter will turn out. Will they be good finishers, future replacements, cow makers? – genotype your bull and find out!
As we get into the spring more and more bulls will be sold in the coming weeks right up to late May or early august. It doesn’t matter if your customers are dairy farmers looking for an easy calving bull for dairy heifers or a pedigree beef breeder looking to produce a calf for the show ring – there are no downsides to genotyping the bull.
If you have outstanding samples for bulls or were thinking of ordering genotype kits – make sure to do it now to be in time for the May evaluation! The cut off for genotype samples to be received by ICBF is the 1st of March to be in the May Evaluation on the 23rd of May. This is the prime time to be selling bulls for the 2023 breeding season.
If you would like to order genotypes you can do so by logging into your HerdPlus account where you will be prompted on your home page. Alternatively you can go to “Services” > “Genomic Services” > “Genotype Individual Animals”. You can also order over the phone by contacting the HerdPlus office on 023 882 0452.