BY PAUL WILLIAMS TBTS TECHNICAL OFFICER
The most important factor influencing the profitability of beef operation in Australia is the number of calves weaned in comparison to the number of cows mated during the breeding season.
The term curve bender gets thrown around quite a bit in bull breeding circles. This TechTalk article will discuss what a curve bender is and why curve benders are important to beef producers. In addition, this article will discuss how to identify curve benders and address a common concern: what to do if your breed doesn’t have curve benders.
The breeding animals which a beef producer selects for the herd will have a large impact on the profitability of the herd, both now and in the future.
Beef producers need to balance the gains of running heavy cows with the cost of maintaining those cows. Depending on the type of country and market prices it may be more profitable to run moderate sized breeding cows rather than large cows.
Birth weight is an important economic trait in beef production systems as lower birth weights are associated with reduced incidence of calving difficulty, but unfavourably correlated with growth rate. Careful management of birth weight by beef producers is therefore required to ensure that calving difficulties are minimised while growth rates are increased or maintained.
While many breeders routinely use the Internet Solutions suite of tools offered by most Breed Societies to access animal and EBV details, plus search upcoming sale catalogues, most may not be aware that the software allows them to customise the display of their search results.
An animal’s performance for all of the traits analysed by BREEDPLAN are affected not just by the genetics of the animal, but also by the environment the animal is in. To account for these environmental effects when calculating the genetic merit or EBV of an individual animal, it is important that an animals performance is only directly compared with those of its peers that have been raised in a similar environment and thus have had an equal opportunity to perform.
Two significant enhancements will be applied to the BREEDPLAN software used to calculate EBVs for Brahman animals. They will be applied first in the November 2014 Brahman GROUP BREEDPLAN analysis, then in all subsequent analyses.
Accurately recording pedigree information is one of the most fundamental jobs of a beef seedstock producer.
A major research project within the Cooperative Research Centre for Beef Genetic Technologies (Beef CRC) studied ways to define the genetic control of traditional and novel measures of reproductive performance in Tropical cattle in Northern Australia.
One of the most common questions asked by seedstock breeders is "What size herd do you need to obtain effective results from BREEDPLAN?
Temperament (also known as docility) is described as the way that cattle behave when being confined in yards or put in an unusual situation such as being separated from the herd.
One of the major challenges facing beef producers at present is the ongoing drought that is gripping many parts of Australia.
Polledness, or the absence of horns, is an important trait being actively selected for within many beef breeding programs across Australia. Breeding polled cattle provides a permanent solution to many of the problems associated with horned cattle, including easier handling of stock, reduced bruising, reduced risk of injury to stock handlers, reduced labour costs and reduced concerns regarding the animal welfare issues associated with dehorning.
Today's beef producer not only has the traditional methods available for sourcing new genetics of print media and word of mouth, but is also able to search through a vast depth of pedigree and performance information made available to them through the internet.
The major influence that beef producers have on the genetics of their herd is through the bulls that they select for use within their breeding program. Selecting bulls with the best genetic package for their operation represents a powerful opportunity to significantly improve the future profitability of their beef enterprise.
With summer mating for spring calvings not too far away, it's important for seedstock producers to understand how to record and submit their herd's mating details to BREEDPLAN. The reason for this is simple - a very important trait for any maternal breed is female reproduction.
A genetic condition is a disease or condition caused by an abnormality in an individual's DNA. These abnormalities can range from a single gene mutation to the addition or loss of an entire chromosome.
An important step when making selection decisions using BREEDPLAN Estimated Breeding Values (EBV) is the consideration of EBV accuracy. The following information provides a guide to understanding and utilising EBV accuracy in selection decisions.