Farm Ireland

Tuesday 23 January 2018

Irish bulls to dominate ICBF rankings once again as genetic testing doubles

Irish bulls are once again the best represented bulls in this year's ICBF dairy bull rankings.

Now in its 11th year, Irish proven genetics have come from nowhere to the point where more than a third of the top 75 bulls are homebred. In 2001, just two of the top 75 bulls were Irish.

The majority of bulls in the ranking at the time were coming from Holland and the USA.

The big change came in 2009 when the adoption of genomic technology accelerated the testing process for Irish genetics.

Despite the number one and two bulls, SOK and KOZ, being culled due to a disease outbreak in Enfield, it now looks likely that Irish bulls are set to become even more dominant in the rankings as the number of young bulls being tested here has doubled to 100 this year.

The average EBI scores for the top 75 bulls this year is only €2 ahead of last year, at €198.

The milk and fertility sub-indices were both up but the calving and, in particular, the beef indices were both down on average this year.

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