To put it simply, genetics do matter. However until now, evaluating the impact of genetics has not always been easy. The ResultsSM program simplifies this task. Results can validate genetics on a single herd level by comparing actual cow performance (breeding values) to their sire's Predicted Transmitting Ability (PTA) for Milk, Fat, Protein, Somatic Cell Score, Daughter Pregnancy Rate (DPR) and Lifetime Net Merit.
Sires used in the herd are grouped into quartiles according to their genetic ranking within each category or trait (listed above). Then, the actual performance of daughters of the sires in each quartile is averaged. The report compares the performance of the top quartile's cows to the bottom quartile and calculates the difference. When seeing the "real differences" in your herd for traits like DPR or Milk production, it is rather easy to calculate your return on investment in genetics and see that genetics do matter.
Witness the Results
One example from a Results report on DPR is shown below. In this herd, there is a 3.95 point difference in DPR. (Remember, for every point of DPR you should see a difference of four days open.) This dairy sees an 18-day difference in days open, proving the cows sired by bulls with a high DPR actually have less days open. This is truly a cost savings at any dairy.
What Data is Needed for a Report?
The first requirement for a Results report is sire identification. For the most accurate report, herds should have at least 150 to 200 sire-identified cows. Smaller herds may have too few cows in each quartile to give a meaningful average. In other words, one or two extreme cows may help or hurt the average.
Results reports can be generated from DHI data or on-farm herd management software files. The data used to generate a report includes cows' 305-day ME records for milk, fat and protein, log somatic cell scores and breeding records.
Results is a free, value-added service provided by Genex. Ask your local Genex representative to run a report.