7 degrees of separation: The angus breed of the future?

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hornedfrogbbq

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Is anyone concerned about the concentration in the angus breed around certain sires? I know there are alot of cattle out there but I am stunned with the concentration on about 20 bulls....and i'd bet 30-50% of the semen sold in the US is out of 10 bulls. Probably not but it sure feels too concentrated.

We are mindful of this and purposeful about spreading out to different lines. Anyone else trying to "outcross" the genetics from the popular stuff? We like a solid EPD profile as much as the next ranch but if we can identify a true "cow maker" type bull, since we retain heifers, we'll take him over some superhero numbered bull.

Thoughts?
 

Stocker Steve

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hornedfrogbbq":1clfq2wc said:
Is anyone concerned about the concentration in the angus breed around certain sires? I know there are alot of cattle out there but I am stunned with the concentration on about 20 bulls....and i'd bet 30-50% of the semen sold in the US is out of 10 bulls.

Depends on what genetic defects they carry.
 

bse

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you hit on it hornedfrog, everyone is playing numbers and not concentrating on making cows, theres lots of great bulls out there to produce females. Most producers cant use them because of numbers and selling bulls. people are brainwased into thinking numbers are the cure all, there the ruin all!!!!! I do think with the sexed industry now, if someone desires they can go back to producing mommas and still produce the desired bulls for the commercial guy. I have a cow with YW of 27 you think anyone would use a bull out of her, nope, but they miss out on a great cow just old breeding.
 

Allenw

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Too many feed wagon dependent cattle being made today in pursuit of epd numbers.
 

Lazy M

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I have to remind myself everytime that I open a new semen catalogue that my overall goal with ai is replacement heifers. It's easy to get caught up in the big growth numbers but I rank a decent $E value, a good doc rating, and a moderate milk value just as high for my goals.
 

skeeter swatter

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Stocker Steve":3k5cvmes said:
hornedfrogbbq":3k5cvmes said:
Is anyone concerned about the concentration in the angus breed around certain sires? I know there are alot of cattle out there but I am stunned with the concentration on about 20 bulls....and i'd bet 30-50% of the semen sold in the US is out of 10 bulls.

Depends on what genetic defects they carry.

Too small of a gene pool will cause more.
 

Katpau

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skeeter swatter":39frx1mq said:
Stocker Steve":39frx1mq said:
hornedfrogbbq":39frx1mq said:
Is anyone concerned about the concentration in the angus breed around certain sires? I know there are alot of cattle out there but I am stunned with the concentration on about 20 bulls....and i'd bet 30-50% of the semen sold in the US is out of 10 bulls.

Depends on what genetic defects they carry.

Too small of a gene pool will cause more.
Inbreeding does not cause genetic defects. It simply reveals them. Every living creature has some mutations in their DNA that is different from the genetic source. Most won't result in any problems. They are what makes us all unique and are the reason even identical twins or clones are not exact duplicates of each other. Some mutations are much more serious than others obviously. While most are simple changes, some of which are even desirable, others are life threatening. Some mutations result in non viable embryos. A cow with fertility problems may not have trouble getting pregnant, but some of her fertilized eggs fail to develop due to a defect. Other defects allow the calf to go full term and result in deformed calves being born. Those are the ones that get the most attention.
 

captain7781

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The Angus breed's genetic diversity is overwhelmingly broad compared to other breeds. If you are concerned about doing your part to combat the concentration of bloodlines you have a myriad of choices. In the entirety of time, it has never been so easy to provide outcross genetics to any given herd. Logistics and natural service are no longer limiting factors for most producers.
 

Nesikep

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I worry about this as well.. Especially with fluctuating markets when something can suddenly be out of style.. It's happened many times already so what's to prevent it from happening again? Same goes for environmental factors, disease, etc.
There are some interesting genetic "defects" like sickle cell anemia in humans.. but it comes with a strange benefit.. the people who have it are also immune to Malaria.
I think for the long term, what's best is a uniformly selected herd (per ranch, or nationwide), but with a broad genetic base.. We're just starting to get the uniformity, but that's by reducing the genetic diversity with these AI sires that sire 1000's of animals
 

Ebenezer

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"I think for the long term, what's best is a uniformly selected herd (per ranch, or nationwide), but with a broad genetic base.. We're just starting to get the uniformity, but that's by reducing the genetic diversity with these AI sires that sire 1000's of animals"
The most stabilizing program for long term survival of a species or breed are segregated populations (herds), with gene concentrations in the herds that are not outcrossed. American Livestock Conservancy has some good reading along those lines. Let those populations cull recessive problems and reshuffle the genepool when outcrossed to other lines. The weakness is getting folks to adhere to the need to create and improve fairly closed lines.
 

skeeter swatter

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Katpau":3uuoylfi said:
skeeter swatter":3uuoylfi said:
Stocker Steve":3uuoylfi said:
Depends on what genetic defects they carry.

Too small of a gene pool will cause more.
Inbreeding does not cause genetic defects. It simply reveals them. Every living creature has some mutations in their DNA that is different from the genetic source. Most won't result in any problems. They are what makes us all unique and are the reason even identical twins or clones are not exact duplicates of each other. Some mutations are much more serious than others obviously. While most are simple changes, some of which are even desirable, others are life threatening. Some mutations result in non viable embryos. A cow with fertility problems may not have trouble getting pregnant, but some of her fertilized eggs fail to develop due to a defect. Other defects allow the calf to go full term and result in deformed calves being born. Those are the ones that get the most attention.
Inbreeding most certainly CAN cause genetic mutations, some favorable and some not.
 

Ebenezer

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"Inbreeding most certainly CAN cause genetic mutations, some favorable and some not."

Totally false.

Mutations have nothing to do with levels of inbreeding or outcrossing. Inbreeding concentrates some genes and if a problem or undesirable trait is concentrated it can be exhibited. Mutations are often a problem of damaged DNA information or noise being transferred at conception or later chemical expose to create alterations. If a line can be created by tight linebreeding and it is useful it is a great day in the neighborhood. But odds are against you at about 5 or 6 to 1 or worse.
 

skeeter swatter

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Ebenezer":yc79lyyi said:
"Inbreeding most certainly CAN cause genetic mutations, some favorable and some not."

Totally false.

Mutations have nothing to do with levels of inbreeding or outcrossing. Inbreeding concentrates some genes and if a problem or undesirable trait is concentrated it can be exhibited. Mutations are often a problem of damaged DNA information or noise being transferred at conception or later chemical expose to create alterations. If a line can be created by tight linebreeding and it is useful it is a great day in the neighborhood. But odds are against you at about 5 or 6 to 1 or worse.

OK my bad? Inbreeding causing defects is what was being pushed when I was in school. (Animal science and pre vet with emphasis on animal ag) I did a quick search on a couple sites and found wording anywhere from inbreeding is suspect in the advent of new mutations to inbreeding can only stack defects, bringing them to the forefront.
 

Cdcollett

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One thing that seemed to come about from the defect hunt in the angus breed is the “outcross” sires that you see at the studs & a few more programs represented. It seems like to me there are a lot of directions you can go. All of them will have their ups and downs depending who and where you are but there are options.
To me it doesn’t matter if defects are caused or revealed by inbreeding. Either is a bad result that can be avoided by not inbreeding if you don’t have a compelling reason to do so.
 

Ebenezer

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"To me it doesn’t matter if defects are caused or revealed by inbreeding." Just a matter of truth versus old tales of yore. What you can do with constant outcross is never know if you have genetic problems in your cattle. Probably why it is so handy and widespread.
 

wbvs58

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Ebenezer":1n1x0f9l said:
"To me it doesn’t matter if defects are caused or revealed by inbreeding." Just a matter of truth versus old tales of yore. What you can do with constant outcross is never know if you have genetic problems in your cattle. Probably why it is so handy and widespread.

Some lines in the Angus breed have been heavily used for their attributes and genetic problems have cropped up but big deal, in this day and age they are very easy to manage and with testing and breeding away from the defects you very quickly drift away from having any carriers at very little financial cost and yet still can retain the attributes of those genetics you were chasing.

It seems that whenever a new defect comes out you have those people beating their chests bragging how they were too smart to get caught up with chasing those lines and their herd is free of those defects, well I say "bully" to them, I hope they get what they are looking for out of the genetics they are chasing.

I have yet to see any of these genetic defects have any significant effect on the actual end user, the commercial cattle producer.

Ken
 

Cdcollett

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I had a lot of predestined in my herd. Loved the cows & even looked for more of that influence right when DD came out. I had countless opportunities for a DD calf but never had one. I’m not saying it doesn’t exist but linebreeding didn’t show me anything there but it did cost me because I either had to pay for testing or just use those cows for commercial cattle. I’m ok with outcrossing because I really don’t want to do that again. Am I likely to have recessive mutated genes in my herd due to that? May be. My whole herd won’t need tested for a defect when they do find one on a farm in Australia though. 036 was deemed defect free due to sire daughter makings. Something was still wrong so I don’t do it. Now if another breeder line breeds and gets lucky enough to create a line with all the economic and functional traits I’m after, I’d not hesitate to use that bull as an outcross.
 
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