The article Norman mentioned is a good one, but don't think it's online. Expected Progeny Differences (EPDs) are basically an indicator of how an animal's progeny will compare with another animal's progeny. For instance, you're comparing two bulls of the same breed. Bull #1 has a birth weight (BW) EPD of 5 lbs; bull #2 has a BW EPD of 1. That means bull #1's calves will be EXPECTED to weigh 4 lbs more at birth than bull #2. Bull #1 has a weaning weight (WW) EPD of 30, bull #2 has a WW EPD of 10. You can EXPECT bull #1's calves to weigh 20 more pounds at weaning than bull #2's calves. It's the same for yearling weight (YW). And this is when the bulls are bred to like cows. The milk EPD, at least in Angus, is an indicator of pounds gained by the calf that are credited to the cow's milk, not pounds of milk produced. That's a pretty simple explanation, if it's not enough, let me know...
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: i would like to know how to read epd as i am a little confused by there meaning<p>There are excellent extension articles on epd's, and more cattle producers should read them. I have a BS in animal science, and I still have to go back to my notes to make sure that all the comparisons I make are valid. In my experience, they are a very valuable tool if used properly. Go to Oklahoma State University's website to find good extension articles. Although I am a Colorado State grad OSU does have a very good site CSU has good info, but less and harder to find. good luck