Fertility is one of the most economically important traits in the cow herd, but can you improve it through genetic selection? Yes, says Lee Leachman of Leachman Cattle of Colorado. However, selecting directly for traits directly related to fertility can be a slow process, while crossbreeding can bring rapid improvement.
Lee Leachman of Leachman Cattle of Colorado outlines the benefits and applications of expected progeny differences in bull selection. He cautions, though, that misuse of this powerful selection tool can have negative consequences by shifting cattle toward extremes in specific genetic traits.
Crossbreeding improves heterosis in cattle, and also offers the benefits of breed complementarity, explains Lee Leachman of Leachman Cattle of Colorado. But, he says, producers need to understand the genetic strengths and weaknesses of their cattle before they can successfully select bulls for breed complementarity.
Lee Leachman from Leachman Cattle of Colorado says the ideal cow size varies between operations, but in many cases, smaller could be better.
Lee Leachman from Leachman Cattle of Colorado describes feed-intake testing and the wide genetic variation in feed per gain it reveals in bulls.
Seedstock producer Lee Leachman, Leachman Cattle of Colorado, discusses genetic selection and his work with Decatur County Feed Yard to apply performance and carcass data back to cow-calf profitability.
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