Genomics

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wbvs58

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I have been getting genomics done on the heifers I retain right from when they first became available through Angus Australia. I always save the before EBV's so I can compare to the genomic enhanced EBV'. Most of the time there are only subtle changes up or down to the EBV's. I had two heifers I had to collect new samples on as they were only able to do the parent verification but apparently the sample had poor genotype. I got the new results the other day and boy were they enhanced. On one of them the BW went from+4.7 to +0.4. Calving ease direct went from -5.9 to a calving ease specialist of +6.7. The 200 day wt went from 63 to 42, 400 day wt 114 to 89, 600 day wt 150 to 116. Milk went from 24 to 32.
To my thinking looking at the phenotype of the heifer and of her mother and from what I know of the sire I think the original EBV's would be pretty representative of the heifer. She is by Mead Magnitude out of a Connealy Earnam cow, both being fairly large animals.
It will be interesting to see how this heifer goes and raises a calf whether her performance is more indicative of the old EBV's or the new. I am going to give Angus Australia a ring and see if their experts can shed any light on what happened.

Ken
 
I did my whole herd a few years back only because ASA had a good deal. I did it more for the parentage check. I never even compared old data to new. I take a lot of the data with a lot of caution.
When it comes to females I raised, real world analysis is more important to me. I think you are right to question your numbers.
 
The 600U bull i got from Simme had the enhanced. He went from very average EPD'S to pretty darn good EPD's. I was happy either way but it made me think i had made the right choice.
 
Jeanne, I do it because being a relatively small herd I feel the numbers I submit in smallish contempory groups don't get the same recognition as data from big herds so for me it is another way of cross referencing with other herds. Angus Australia have a very good sire benchmarking program that has been running for over a decade now where detailed data is collected from from progeny from controlled matings in cooperative herds. They have analysed the data extensively and they have concluded that the EBV's that the bulls inherit do not change significantly at the end of the process. This change in the EBV's seems to run contrary to this research. Yes, numbers don't mean much to me, my best cows may not even be the best phenotypically probably because they are too busy raising a great calf and going straight back in calf. To me performance is what counts. I do look at numbers in the background as when selling bulls about 50% of my buyers will look at numbers especially calving ease as the majority have them in paddocks that only get checked about once a week. I am moving away from selling bulls so I will be turning up the screws on calf weaning weights and cow fertility 1 round AI, 1 cycle with the bull which goes hand in hand with weaning weights as when you have them all calving within 3 weeks they all have a chance to be a respectable weight at weaning for a nice even pen at the weaning sales. Also with calving in a 3 week interval it makes it a lot easier to achieve your fertility goals as you are not trying to bring any forward before they are ready. They are all very eager to get in calf when you breed them.
I will not lose sight of phenotype or EBV's, phenotype is how I select my heifers however after this performance is my priority.

Ken
 
I sat through a talk on genomics and the presenter said that genomics only work within a population. For example, she said that the Angus test they were selling wouldn't work with for a New Zealand Angus.
It is my view that EPDs and EBVs are outdated technologies. Relics from when computer power was limited. Now we should be able to compare animals directly on demand.
 
I sat through a talk on genomics and the presenter said that genomics only work within a population. For example, she said that the Angus test they were selling wouldn't work with for a New Zealand Angus.
It is my view that EPDs and EBVs are outdated technologies. Relics from when computer power was limited. Now we should be able to compare animals directly on demand.
I just heard back from one of Angus Australia's experts today after he looked things up for me . He admitted that the change was large but it fell within 2 standard deviations of what would be expected for 96% of the population which is apparently OK. That did not mean much to me other than the change is due to the genomics. I did not get the heifers actual BW, must have had it out in the big paddock and was too mobile by the time I found them but I do not recall her being overly small. The change in the EBV's does not worry me, I was just a bit shell shocked with the magnitude of the change. Anyhow hopefully she is bred now and we will see if she lives up to the numbers.

Ken
 
My EPDs (USA Angus) can vary quite a bit pre and post genomics - both ways - some get better and some get worse. The entire thing is still quite a mystery to me and I'm still quite suspicious it's a money grab. Some angus places with "poor" EPDs seem to almost be giving up on them entirely (Duff doesn't even list them in their sale book and SAV was questioning them in their sale book - especially WRT ever increasing weaning and yearling weights and ever improving calving ease. Some of my older cows have TERRIBLE EPDs but they've stuck around because their calving ease and weights have been fantastic. Why the disparity between EPDS and actual performance? The pros have told me it's because there are always "outliers" to what is expected.

Anyway, I keep feeding the machine $50 a head to get some numbers .....
 

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