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Number of Calves Produced at Specified Age as a Measure of Reproductive Performance in Beef Cattle under Artificially-Inseminated Breeding Scheme
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Number of Calves Produced at Specified Age as a Measure of Reproductive Performance in Beef Cattle under Artificially-Inseminated Breeding Scheme
Oyama, Kenji; Fujiwara, Shinya; Katsuta, Tomohiro; Honda, Takeshi; Mukai, Fumio;
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Reproductive abilities in beef cattle herds are receiving increased attention due to recent rises in production costs. To achieve more efficient management, a measure of fertility, namely the number of calves produced at k yr of age (), was developed and its genetic parameters were estimated from Japanese Black cows by restricted maximum likelihood procedures. The k examined were distributed from 2 to 10 yr of age and averaged 1.077 calves over 43,536 cows. The averages increased by approximately 0.9 calf with each additional 1 yr increment in k. Heritabilities of were estimated to be low ranging from 0.083 to 0.162, which seemingly suggested a difficulty of genetic improvement. However, large genetic variation and high accuracy were observed in predicted breeding values of . For example, the breeding values of were predicted between -0.303 and +0.213 with average accuracy of 0.607 for cows with observations. Genetic correlations among different k were generally high and positive (0.474 to 0.995). The analyses showed that at least was required to maintain the genetic correlations of 0.8 or higher with subsequent . Also maintained the genetic correlations of 0.9 or higher with subsequent The results suggested some possibilities for to be a selection criterion considering its genetic variation, high accuracy and consistency with subsequent performance.
Beef Cattle;Genetic Parameter;Number of Calves Produced;Reproductive Performance;
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