A group from Dawn Meats recently visited the ICBF’s Tully Test Centre in Co. Kildare. There are over 200 cattle being progeny tested in Tully now and these animals are subject to a number of different measures, including: growth potential through weight gain; visual muscle and skeletal measures; docility; functionality; ultrasound fat and muscle scanning; and finally feed intake. Pictured above: Under 16-month-old bulls being performance tested in Tully on a Calan gate feeding system.
The group were very interested with how this information is combined at the end of the test with previous performance-tested animals, but also with commercially-recorded data, to feed into the €uro-star index for a particular bull.
The group from Dawn meats were very interested about what data is recorded on all of the cattle in Tully. The data recorded is listed below:
- Average daily gain (kg/day);
- Feed conversion efficiency;
- Cattle are linear scored for functionality;
- Scanned for muscle and fat depth and intramuscular fat;
- Health and disease traits;
- Recording of lameness, genetic defects, pneumonia and other illnesses;
- All cattle are genotyped to verify the sire and dam;
- Methane data on animals in Tully;
- All cattle slaughtered are used for studies by Meat Technology Ireland in order to develop a meat quality index;
- Carcass and meat eating quality;
- Carcass grades, primal yields, colour, pH, composition and sensory analysis.