Eighteen new graduate bulls have been awarded gold medal status as part of CRV Ambreed’s latest team of proven sires.
The bulls and their breeders have been through a rigorous, four-year selection process, which identifies those sires with the highest genetic merit.
CRV Ambreed’s proven sires feature in the herd improvement company’s annual catalogue, which thousands of dairy farmers peruse each year to select the right genetics to meet their herd improvement goals.
Product Manager Oceania Peter van Elzakker says dairy farmers want milking herds that are healthy and efficient, while improving the sustainability and profitability of their herd.
“Our new Better Life Health (BLH) and Better Life Efficiency (BLE) Indexes will enable farmers to rank this year’s top bulls so they can easily and quickly choose those sires that will produce the most healthy and efficient herds,” says van Elzakker.
“We have several new graduates this year with outstanding BLH and BLE indexes. Progeny from bulls such as Carrick and Timeline will have a lower rate of health incidents, and their daughters will be easier to manage and produce, with fewer health-related issues.
“If you’re after cows with high longevity that produce lots of solids per kg of feed, then Classic is your guy.”
This year’s graduates will also boost new additions to the team of LowN Sires bulls – this team was launched in early 2017 as a way for New Zealand farmers to help lower the impact of nitrogen leaching on the land.
“Daughters from our LowN Sires graduates, such as Dart and Omnibus, will pee out less nitrogen and are a potentially powerful aid assisting farmers to reduce their environmental footprint,” van Elzakker says.
CRV Ambreed’s 2018 proven sire line-up also features impressive new graduates with superior facial eczema and udder traits. Top A2A2 bulls are also available for farmers wanting to breed cows to produce A2 milk.
CRV Ambreed’s careful sire selection process starts each year when its analysts embark on a tour of New Zealand in search of our country’s best cows that will produce the next ‘superstar bull’.
In 2013, these farm visits saw the top graduates chosen from the many bull calves across the nation nominated for consideration for the company’s Progeny Test Programme.
“Our breeding team have specialist knowledge of cows and their families. Using this expertise to assess the potential of each bull calf, they selected a handful of bull calves to the part of our progeny test programme that year,” van Elzakker says.
“Once the bull calf has matured, its semen is carefully collected at our production and distribution centre. From here, the semen is distributed to our progeny test herds, where the performance of the daughters is closely monitored.”
Van Elzakker says daughters from the bulls are tested for milk production and type to determine if the bull’s genetics are suitable for different farming systems and environments.
“Based on that information, the top bulls are chosen as graduates and become permanent residents at CRV Ambreed’s production centre where they are given the royal treatment like high-performing athletes.”
Van Elzakker says CRV Ambreed already has a strong genetic offering for dairy farmers this year and the new graduates are the cream on the top.
“We’re proud of our latest graduates and their breeders, and excited about the significant part they will play in securing the future success and sustainability of the New Zealand dairy industry.”
CRV Ambreed’s new proven sires in various teams:
BETTER LIFE HEALTH (BLH) TEAM
Carrick is a Kingpin son with superior traits that mean you can use him with confidence. This Dual Index graduate Jersey has good longevity typical of Kingpin, with BLE 7% and BLH 8%. His TOP is very good, with exceptional udder and shed traits.
Timeline is a graduate Friesian with low liveweight and strong production. He has a BLE of 6% and a BLH of 5% indicating excellent performance. This graduate has good fertility for the breed and a short gestation length of -7. Timeline is A1A2 with good farmer traits complemented by good stature, capacity and udder support.
BETTER LIFE EFFICIENCY (BLE) TEAM
This Murmur son is a graduate Crossbreed J11F5 breed mix, so farmers can easily use him as an easy calving bull. A dual-index bull, Classic has a superior BLE 10% with an incredible somatic cell count BV. His BLH is 5% possessing extreme longevity and good udder overall BV. He also has a good protein to liveweight ratio. He joins the likes of InSires Meander AMPLIFIER-ET S2F with superior BLE of 11% and Glen Leith QUIGLEY ET S2J with great BLE of 9%, among others.
LowN SIRES TEAM
Dart is a high-NZMI Friesian sire with good shed traits, especially when it comes to temperament. This A2A2 bull has a solid TOP and will produce moderate size cows with good capacity. His daughters maintain body condition and are fertile.
If you want to go for production then Omnibus is your bull. This graduate Jersey is a Degree son with exceptional protein and fat BV. Omnibus is a high liveweight A2A2 bull with an excellent BLE of 9%. His daughters realise all the production while still getting in-calf and maintaining body condition.
Watchman is another sizeable addition to the LowN Sires team. At 7% for BLH and 6% for BLE he shows that care for the environment and high index can go together. His daughters have size, capacity and great udders.
FACIAL ECZEMA TEAM
Walker is the result of the Jersey Genome programme with Jersey NZ. He is a big, dual-index bull with a good live weight, super protein, and excellent farmer traits. He also has superior eczema tolerance traits. While producing big volumes of milk, Walker is very good for somatic cells, stature and udder traits. He offers outcross genetics through his sire Gun of a Sun. Walker joins InSires such as Lornlace HH DESIGN-ET S3F and Phaser F12J4 in the team known for its greater tolerance of FE.
Omah is a dual-index bull and features high on the RAS list. This Friesian graduate has extreme traits for production, protein and fat, with low somatic cell count and gestation length. Omah is an A2A2 bull with an excellent type.
Genenjector is graduate Crossbreed F10J6 with a shorter gestation. This Macca son is an A2A2 bull with a high index and strong somatic cell BV. At 6% for BLE he is highly efficient in converting grass to solids.
Champ is a dual-index graduate Jersey bull with a serious protein BV and good fat production. He is an outcross with incredible promise from a fantastic new cow family. Champ is an A2A2 bull with excellent BLE and BLH indexes of 9% and 5% respectively. He is tremendous for body condition, capacity and udder BVs.
TOP UDDER TEAM
Cortex is a high-NZMI Friesian sire with superb production and type traits. High protein and fat BVs are complemented with great capacity, dairy conformation and strong udder overall. His longevity is exceptional with a BLE of 7% and he also features in the LowN Sires team. Cortex has good shed traits making him a bull that ticks all the boxes if you are going for production and type.
At 8% for BLE and 5% for BLH, Rawhiti will help build healthy and efficient herds. His great shed traits, great capacity and high Udder Overall means farmers will love milking his daughters. His low calving difficulty makes him a great bull to use over maiden heifers both in crossbred and Friesian herds.
These two graduates join the likes of InSires Lornlace MAC DUFFY-OC S3F, Pelorus F10J6 and Airtime in the team that’s known for producing cows with top udders.