The recent release of Australian Breeding Values by DataGene shows more young, high quality Holstein bulls coming through the ranks over the past year.
The April ABV release is the first published by DataGene, which has taken on the genetic evaluation role performed by Australian Dairy Herd Improvement Scheme over the past 30 years.
DataGene genetic evaluation manager Michelle Axford said there were notable increases in the genetic merit of the top Holstein young bulls.
‘‘That’s great news for Australian dairy farmers,’’ she said.
‘‘Having access to more, better, young bulls means more choice. And by always choosing bulls that carry the Good Bulls logo, dairy farmers can be confident their breeding choices will contribute to an overall improvement in their herd’s genetic merit for profit.’’
This time last year there were no young, genomic Holstein bulls with a Balanced Performance Index above 300 in the Good Bulls Guide. Now there are more than 25.
The average BPI of the top 50 young bulls is now more than 300, representing a more than 20 per cent increase over the past year.
In addition, there is a wider range of bull companies represented by the top 10 Holstein bulls, going up from two last April to five in this release.
The past three years has also seen a steady increase in the number of Holstein bulls genomically tested.
Mrs Axford said while DataGene had taken on the role of genetic evaluation and broader herd improvement roles, ABV releases were a case of business as usual.
‘‘DataGene has some major projects on the go, including the development of the much-awaited centralised data repository, but the industry can be assured that the routine ABV releases will continue as normal,’’ she said.
DataGene is an initiative of Dairy Australia and the herd improvement industry.