Official Norwegian Red (NR) genetic evaluations for April 2019 are now available from Geno.
The details for the calculation and publication of breeding values (BV) for NR have not changed since 2018. We do, however, plan some minor adjustments to the calculation and publication details that will take place later in 2019.
Top GS sires that are available now
Norwegian Red BV on young, genomic selected (GS) bulls are directly comparable to BV on daughter proven NR sires. Reliabilities for BV on NR GS sires are very good, but they are lower than reliabilities on daughter proven NR sires. It is recommended that herds use multiple sires in any given time period to mitigate risk.
Geno has 48 GS sires with a Total Merit Index (TMI) of 20 or higher with semen available for international markets. Nineteen of these available top GS sires have TMI 25 or higher. Within these top GS sires, dairy producers can find groups of sires that meet the needs of all herds. Norwegian Red bulls that are polled and A2A2 for beta casein are routinely available so producers can readily find bulls that meet these requirements within the top GS sires.
Many of these GS sires are already being sold in some markets and we encourage all markets to look closely at the GS sires that are available.
Top GS sires currently alive and available include Ranheim (11851) with a TMI of 32, Krovoll (11921) with a TMI of 29 and Dalsgybda (polled) (11906) also with a TMI of 29. These three bulls are followed by five additional bulls with TMI of 28. These five are Skarphol (11855), Onstad (polled) (11819), Langdalen (11954), Horvereid (homozygous polled) (11948) and Kvernmo (polled) (11837).
Ranheim, Krovoll, Skarphol, Onstad, and Kvernmo are all sons from Reitan 2 (11033). Dalsgybda is a son of Enger (11147) and Langdalen is a son of Korsen (11209). Horvereid is a son of Midtigaren (11708).
All these top eight sires have excellent daughter production with a range in BV for protein yield from 112 to 132 and the range in BV for fat yield from 113 to 129. The range in the udder health index is from 105 to 124 and the range in udder index is from 106 to 123 so this group of bulls will produce daughters with excellent fat and protein production as well as excellent udder health and very good udder conformation.
Alm (11876) follows these top bulls with a TMI of 27. Alm continues to be in high demand in some markets. Alm is a Skjelvan (11039) son with high production and very good udders (protein yield = 126 and fat yield = 134, udder index = 112).
Top progeny tested sires
Rankings for daughter proven sires changed very little from the December 2018 genetic evaluations. Reitan 2 (11033) still tops the list of daughter proven sires based on TMI (TMI = 31) but Reitan 2 is dead and he has no semen left in Norway. However, he has numerous top GS sons that are available and that are already popular in some markets (see section above).
Notable other daughter proven sires include Enger (11147), Roen (11690)and Rud (11728). Enger has now added many second crop daughters (he now has 1949 daughters in his production proof) and continues to be an excellent all-around sire (TMI=22). Enger is alive and available in several markets and sexed semen is available on Enger.
Roen is newly daughter proven and now has 378 daughters in production. Roen is a Skei (10617) son from a Velsvik (10432) daughter. Roen daughters are small to moderate in size with very good production and very good component percentages. His overall trait profile is very good as he is above average for the key traits that are important in most markets. We expect that he will be popular in markets where daughter proven sires are in heavy demand.
Rud, who is homozygous polled and who has been popular as a GS sire, is in the early stages of getting daughter-based BVs. Rud now has 109 daughters with early production records and his proof profile continues to look similar to his GS based profile.
The next official genetic evaluations will be available August 13, 2019.