Short communication: Animal-level factors associated with whether a dairy female is mated to a dairy or beef bull
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CitationD.P. Berry, S.C. Ring, Short communication: Animal-level factors associated with whether a dairy female is mated to a dairy or beef bull, Journal of Dairy Science, Volume 103, Issue 9, 2020, Pages 8343-8349, ISSN 0022-0302, https://doi.org/10.3168/jds.2020-18179.
AbstractWhen serving a female, the producer must decide whether to mate her to a dairy or beef bull. Tools assisting in this decision could be a useful component of the decision process. A database of 2,283,100 artificial inseminations from 806,725 dairy females was used to investigate what factors were associated with servicing a given female to a beef bull. The probability of being inseminated with a beef bull increased with each service and as the breeding season progressed. An older cow had greater odds of being served with a beef bull, as did cows that calved later in the year, had recently experienced dystocia, were a longer time calved, or were of a poor overall genetic merit compared with herdmates. Cows with low somatic cell count in the previous lactation compared with herdmates were less likely to be mated to a beef bull, as were cows that yielded relatively higher milk solids in the previous lactation. Relative to a first-parity cow, the odds of a fifth-parity cow being mated to a beef bull were 1.35, whereas those of a tenth-parity cow were 2.11. The odds of a female in the worst 10% for total genetic merit being mated to a beef bull were 2.90 times those of a female in the top 10%. Although dystocia was associated with the likelihood of being mated to a beef bull, the actual likelihood did not vary much by level of dystocia experienced. Relative to the first service, the odds of the third and fifth services being to a beef bull were 2.23 and 3.71, respectively. These probability estimates can form the back-end system supporting decisions on mating type for a female within a sire mating advice system but also in risk analysis of farm management.
FunderScience Foundation Ireland; Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine
Grant Number16/RC/3835 (VistaMilk); Dairy4Beef
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