Next Generation herd beginning to take shape
MORe than 50 heifers with an average EBI of close to €210 have already been assembled for Teagasc's Next Generation herd at the 250ac Dairygold research farm next to Moorepark.
They form the first tranche of 120 heifers that will eventually comprise the highest genetic merit herd in the country.
Teagasc has paid €1,400 plus or minus €6 for every EBI above or below this mark, but all eligible animals must pass a raft of disease tests first.
The herd will be used to generate research on the performance of high EBI animals on their feed conversion efficiencies, productivity, fertility, disease resistance and methane emissions.
The herd will also be sub-divided to compare performance at different stocking densities and feeding rates.
The research farm will also feature robotic milking machines. The first animals are due to calve next January.