Usability for Genetic Evaluations of Records from Herds Participating in Progeny Test Programs of Artificial Insemination Organizations

*Animal Improvement Programs Laboratory, Agricultural Research Service, USDA, Beltsville, MD 20705-2350
ReQuest, Ltd., Madison, WI 53704
National Association of Animal Breeders, Columbia, MO 65205-1033

ABSTRACT Thirteen AI organizations provided identification of herds that participated in their progeny test programs in 1989 and 1990; 15% of those herds participated in programs of more than one AI organization, but only 2.6% participated in programs of more than two AI organizations. Of the 19,589 participating herds, 82 and 76% were enrolled in DHI test plans that were considered to be usable for genetic evaluations during 1991 and 1992. For herds that had participated in AI progeny test programs, mean percentages of usable records were 77% in 1991 and 78% in 1992; the mean percentages of usable records for nonparticipating herds were 62% in 1991 and 60% in 1992. Participating herds had larger mean herd sizes, higher means and standard deviations of milk yields, younger cows, and a lower percentage of registered cows than did nonparticipating herds. Analysis of variance was used to explain the variation in the percentage of records that were usable for genetic evaluations. Herds that participated in AI progeny test programs or that had smaller herd sizes, higher mean milk yields, younger cows, or larger percentages of registered cows had higher percentages of records that were usable for genetic evaluations. Improved usability of records for genetic evaluations would increase the efficiency of AI progeny testing, and consideration of herd characteristics associated with higher percentages of usable records should aid AI organizations in evaluating prospective herds for progeny test programs.

Key Words: genetic evaluation, usable records, progeny test, Dairy Herd Improvement

1997 J. Dairy Sci. 80:2599-2605

© 1997, by the American Dairy Science Association. All rights reserved.