Reference : Short communication: estimates of genetic parameters of body condition score in the firs...
Scientific journals : Article
Life sciences : Animal production & animal husbandry
Life sciences : Genetics & genetic processes
Short communication: estimates of genetic parameters of body condition score in the first 3 lactations using a random regression animal model.
Loker, S. [> > > >]
Bastin, Catherine mailto [Université de Liège - ULg > Sciences agronomiques > Zootechnie > >]
Miglior, F. [> > > >]
Sewalem, A. [> > > >]
Schaeffer, L. R. [> > > >]
Jamrozik, J. [> > > >]
Osborne, V. [ > > ]
Journal of Dairy Science
American Dairy Science Association
Yes (verified by ORBi)
[en] The objective of this research was to estimate the genetic parameters of body condition score (BCS) in the first 3 lactations in Canadian Holstein dairy cattle using a multiple-lactation random regression animal model. Field staff from Valacta milk recording agency (Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, QC, Canada) collected BCS from Quebec herds several times throughout each lactation. Approximately 32,000, 20,000, and 11,000 first-, second-, and third-parity BCS were analyzed, respectively, from a total of 75 herds. Body condition score was a moderately heritable trait over the lactation for parity 1, 2, and 3, with average daily heritabilities of 0.22, 0.26, and 0.30, respectively. Daily heritability ranged between 0.14 and 0.26, 0.19 and 0.28, and 0.24 and 0.33 for parity 1, 2, and 3, respectively. Genetic variance of BCS increased with days in milk within lactations. The low genetic variance in early lactation suggests that the evolution of the ability to mobilize tissue reserves in early lactation provided cattle with a major advantage, and is, therefore, somewhat conserved. The increasing genetic variance suggests that more genetic differences were related to how well cows recovered from the negative energy balance state. More specifically, increasing genetic variation as lactation progressed could be a reflection of genetic differences in the ability of cows to efficiently control the rate of mobilization of tissue reserves, which would not be crucial in early lactation. The shape of BCS curves was similar across parities. From first to third parity, differences included the progressively deeper nadir and faster rate of recovery of condition. Daily genetic correlations between parities were calculated from 5 to 305 DIM, and were summed and divided by 301 to obtain average daily genetic correlations. The average daily genetic correlations were 0.84 between parity 1 and 2, 0.83 between parity 1 and 3, and 0.86 between parity 2 and 3. Although not 1, these genetic correlations are still strong, so much of the variation observed in BCS was controlled by the same genes for each of the first 3 lactations. If a genetic evaluation for BCS is developed, regular collection of first-lactation BCS records should be sufficient for genetic evaluation.
Copyright (c) 2011 American Dairy Science Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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