Farm Ireland

Tuesday 23 January 2018

ICBF beef breeding initiatives to consider

Suckler cows were tested on milk and docility values
Suckler cows were tested on milk and docility values

In addition to buying a bull and/or some semen straws, there are a number of other ICBF beef breeding initiatives that farmers should consider this spring. These include:

  • G€N€ IR€LAND. If you are using AI and are keen on getting high quality bulls at affordable prices, then you should look at the G€N€ IR€LAND breeding programme. More than 40 bulls have already been tested as part of this initiative, resulting in several high-profile graduates including RWB, CF85, CWI and DRU. At present there are 12 high indexed bulls on the programme from across the range of breeds.
  • Cow milk and docility. Suckler herd owners recently received a report asking them to score their cows for both milk and docility value. Initial analysis of this data is very positive, indicating that farmers know their cows. They know the cows that have milk and those that don't, and the ones that are dangerous to be around at the time of calving and thereafter. If you haven't returned this form, we urge you to do so over the coming weeks as it will result in more accurate genetic indexes for your animals in the future.
  • Weight recording. ICBF is currently undertaking a review of its weight recording service. Farmers can expect to see a range of new services and reports available this spring as we endeavour to get more pedigree breeders and commercial farmers involved in routine weight recording. Remember, you can't manage what you don't measure!

If you have any questions on any of these initiatives, contact ICBF HerdPlus on 1800 600 900.

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