Monday, September 20, 2021
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Top young sire Captain confirms his green credentials

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YOUNG sire Genosource Cap-tain reaffirms his credentials as the leading Profitable Lifetime Index sire in the genomic £PLI ranking, published this week by AHDB Dairy.

Weighing in with a PLI of £944, at the same time he also stakes his claim as the leading sire ranked on the newly launched EnviroCow index, with a score of 5.1. Contributing to this is a remarkable Feed Advantage score of 260. This means his daughters are predicted to save 260kg of dry matter intake during each lactation, compared with daughters of a bull of comparable production whose Feed Advantage is zero.

Both EnviroCow and Feed Ad-vantage (see panel) are published for the first time ever with this month’s AHDB rankings, and are revealing that many of the top £PLI sires have superb environmental and feed efficiency credentials alongside their general outstanding performance.

“This association comes as no surprise, as in £PLI, we are already identifying the most efficient pro-duction animals with the best health,” says Marco Winters, Head of Animal Genetics for AHDB. “However, EnviroCow and Feed Advantage help pinpoint those with the best environmental credentials, including efficiency of converting feed into milk.”

Number two in the £PLI rank-ing is the new entrant, Wilra Knowhow (PLI £909). This Kenobi son transmits solid production alongside favourable health traits and is another bull with excellent Feed Advantage and EnviroCow credentials.

Climbing up the rankings into third place is Denovo 16219 Aladdin (PLI £906). With a massive Predicted Transmitting Ability (PTA) for fat of 57.1kg, this bull also shows highly favourable Maintenance and Feed Advantage indexes.

Peak AltaPlinko consolidates the top five ranking he achieved in April, now with a PLI of £895 and superb production, including one of the highest PTAs for weight of protein in the Holstein breed at 43.4kg.

Denovo 3303 Citizen moves up into fifth (PLI £880) thanks to strong indexes for somatic cell count (-21), daughter fertility (12.2) and lifespan (+159 days).

This performance contributes to Citizen’s excellent score of £300 for HealthyCow. This index was launched last April and rolls all of the health traits into one financial figure, which represents the saving each bull is predicted to pass to his daughters in their lifetimes through their better health.

Next up is Progenesis Mahomes (PLI £875), another strong health transmitter (HealthyCow £275), with an exceptional milk PTA at 1,023kg.

UK-bred Boghill Glamour Applaud ranks seventh, with a PLI of £871. His outstanding Lifespan (+183 days) and daughter Fertility Index (12.9) are specialist features of this Appeal son.

New in eighth place is Badger SSI Big Al Newman. This udder health specialist (-28 SCC, -4 Mastitis) also ranks well for Fertility Index (12.5), contributing to a remarkable daughter Lifespan of 244, meaning his daughters are predicted to live 244 days longer than a bull scoring zero for LS.

It’s no surprise to see these scores rolled into a high index for HealthyCow which, at £ 358, is one of the best in the breed. Newman also transmits the highest type in the top 10, with a Type Merit of 2.23.

Ninth ranking Siemers Brave (PLI £865) is a production specialist with 1,204kg milk and 44.3kg protein, while 10th place (PLI £863) is claimed by three bulls. First is the newcomer and all-rounder, Denovo 16441 Millennium; next is high EnviroCow ranking Denovo 16325 Sentiment, who also transmits one of the highest PTAs for fat weight at 60.2kg; and then comes Bomaz Episode, one of the best milk quality transmitters at the top of the rankings, with +0.38 fat per cent and +0.15 protein per cent.

Also new to the top 20 since the April release are 14th-ranking Progenesis Phenomenon (ABS Crim-son x Progenesis Marius) with a PLI of £856 and equal 17th, Denovo 15969 Atlantis (Denovo 7921 Atrium x De-Su 13050 Spectre), with a PLI of

£854.

Not to be missed is the highest-ranking newcomer of UK breeding, Huddlestone Slindon (PLI £834), whose daughter Fertility Index of 14.7 is amongst the best of the Holstein breed. Sired by Denovo Invictus and from a Seagull-Bay-MJ Applejax dam, this bull with a thoroughly international pedigree hails from the Gue family’s Sussex herd, providing proof that an individual dairy producer can still compete with the might of the international breeding programmes.

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