Genetic Change in Milk, Fat, Days Open, and Body Weight After Calving Based on Three Methods of Sire Selection
Publication Type
Original research
  • J.M. Abdallah
  • B.T. McDaniel

Three Holstein lines, were compared, based on different methods of sire selection, for genetic change in 3.7% FCM, fat yield, days open, and predicted body weight after calving. The three lines were 1) evaluated sires selected only for 3.7% FCM (milk line), 2) evaluated sires selected on an index that included 3.7% FCM and type traits (index line), and 3) young bulls selected on pedigree for 3.7% FCM (young line). Cows from these lines were born in 1971 through 1993 in five experimental herds owned by the State Farm Division of North Carolina Department of Agriculture. Breeding values of cows in each line computed with a repeatability model were averaged by and regressed on birth year to estimate genetic change. Genetic gains in 3.7% FCM were 81 kg/yr for the milk line, 61 kg/yr for the line selected on index, and 68 kg/yr for the young sire line. Estimates of genetic gain in fat yield were 2.99, 2.16, and 2.54 kg/yr in the three lines, respectively. Genetic gains in 3.7% FCM and fat yield in the milk line were significantly different from the index and young sire lines, but the index and young sire lines were not significantly different. Estimates of genetic change in days open were 0.71, 0.57, and 0.63 d/yr in the milk, index, and young sire lines, respectively. These estimates were not significantly different. Average breeding values for body weight decreased for births from 1971 to 1981 then rapidly increased for later births in all lines.

Journal of Dairy Science Volume 83, Issue 6, Pages 1359–1363
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Publication Type
Both (Printed and Online)