Monday, February 24, 2014

Yon Family Farms Use Genomic Test to Deliver More Predictable Seedstock


Kevin and Lydia Yon describe their motivation for using genomic-enhanced EPDs in a recent segment on The Angus Report. Listening to their comments, one gets the sense that a good reputation from a reliable product is important to their operation. To provide reliable information to their commercial bull buyers they have collected various forms of performance data, from weights to ultrasound data. They value the increase accuracy of genomic-enhanced EPDs and feel that they can be more confident in the bulls they place with customers.

The approach Yon Family Farms is just one of many applications and benefits of genomic-enhanced EPDs. Genomic-enhanced EPDs can also be used to increase rate of genetic progress, select for an optimum, decrease the generation interval, put more intensity on the selection of females, or select for difficult to measure traits.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Building Better Genetics


Jimmy Goode is a seedstock producer who understands the potential of genomics. I'm glad to see he was highlighted on The Angus Report. He points out that genomic testing improves accuracy for the EPDs of young animals. Goode also highlights that genomic predictions are applicable in large and small operations.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

New Prices for Limousin Genetic Tests Announced

The North American Limousin Foundation announced new prices for genetic testing. Of particular note, is the new price for genomic-enhanced EPDs coming in at $60 or $55 if bundled with another test. As the price of genomic-enhanced EPDs continues to decrease, it becomes more attractive for producers to test larger numbers of animals.

Other reminders:
DNA Results are sent to NALF from the lab every Thursday,  results are then processed in the NALF system and available to members on Fridays.
NALF only registers ET calves off of the DNA test request form. Any natural calves must be submitted on a natural calf registration application.
February 15th is the deadline to submit data to be included in the next genetic evaluation (calculation of EPDs).

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Crossbred Replacement Females Average $529 More Than Straightbred

Real-world research utilizing crossbreeding has led to documented real-world results in hybrid female demand compared to straight-bred females. During the recent Circle A Ranch Sale Oct. 19, 29 black-baldie heifers averaged $2,960, and the top-selling lot was black-baldie heifers bred with heifer-calf-confirmed pregnancies at $3,450 each. The average price paid for the 269 straight-bred Angus heifers was $2,431. That’s a crossbred advantage of $529 per head in price.

In 2007 Circle A Ranch, Iberia, Mo., began a research project with the American Hereford Association (AHA) designed to determine and measure the advantages of using Hereford genetics on commercial Angus cows. Results from the project documented the Hereford efficiency advantage with a 7% increase in conception rate along with improved feed efficiency and average daily gain. Utilizing the Circle A data, economist Vern Pierce developed an economic model which projected that over a 10-year period, using Hereford bulls on Angus-based females would add $514 net over the life of a cow or approximately $51 per cow per year to a rancher’s bottom line.

Now, six years later, Circle A is still crossbreeding and having great success. Circle A’s Nick Hammett says that since the completion of the research project, the ranch has purchased four Hereford bulls that it is utilizing natural service and collecting for artificial insemination. The Hereford bulls are mated to Angus cows, and the resulting crossbred heifers are highly sought-after. Each fall Circle A Ranch offers bred replacement heifers in its production sale, and in recent years, the crossbred heifers have been topping the sale.

Hammett says the Circle A Ranch staff plans to continue using Hereford bulls: “We will keep using Hereford genetics. If they keep selling like this, it’s a win-win for us. We harvest all the steer progeny, and the F1 females sell really well.”

In an article by Beef Magazine's Burt Rutherford, 17.2% of survey respondents said they added Hereford genetics (up from 12.4% in 2010), 11.9% added Red Angus (up from 8.8% in 2010), 8.8% added Simmental (up from 4.6%), and 8.1% added SimAngus (up from 5.5% in 2010).

Cattle producers are realizing the 25% increase in lifetime production of a crossbred cow.

Adapted from Hereford press release "Hereford-Sired Replacement Average $529 More Than Angus-Sired".