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Getting cows in calf

Getting cows in calf

…is key for a dairy farmer’s profitability. That’s why at Alta we always advise to select for high semen fertility bulls. However with Spring joining in full swing, it actually makes it even more important to select for fertility to give your return cows the best chance to get in calf. Getting your in-calf rate to 85% in the first 6 weeks should be your target because it translates to more profit in your pocket.

Concept Plus is the industry leading Sire Conception ranking. Concept Plus has a more robust and accurate semen classification system than any other North American semen fertility rating and is the “go to” ranking for many progressive farmers globally. A sire designated Concept Plus will deliver 2-5% higher conception rates than the average. So by using Concept Plus semen you will give your cows every chance to get pregnant!

Additional to getting your returns in calf, condensing their calving period is possible by selecting for short gestation length sires. This will enable you to better manage the calving period and have more cows returning to milk faster meaning more profit.

SGL is the trait for the expression of gestation length in the US. This figure is expressed in expected days shorter (-) or longer compared to the average of 277 days for Holstein sires. Short gestation length sires, or those with a negative value, will provide a shorter gestation period and can be used to reduce your overall calving period.

To maximise profit at joining for return cows use Concept Plus rated sires who also have a shorter gestation length.

Check our bull search for Concept Plus and high SGL sires.

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Did you know Concept Plus?

Concept Plus  is the stable semen fertility measure for Dairyman globally since 2001?

Concept Plus  has improved accuracy over SCR. That data is included from large progressive dairies in 3 countries? And accounts for more factors that affect accuracy like technician and breeding code effects?

Concept Plus  served as the basis for the new SCR evaluations?

Concept Plus  sires deliver between 2% and 5% higher conception rates than average sires?

 

Stable and accurate

Concept Plus  was first introduced in 2001 because Alta recognised the need for Dairyman globally that getting cows pregnant was a key to farm profit. As a result, Concept Plus  has been the constant source for high semen fertility sires for the last 16 years.

Concept Plus  only uses current data from their Advantage Partner herds located in the US, Canada and Germany. These large progressive dairies provide large contemporary groups for greater accuracy and have always only used palpated pregnancy checks to confirm conception.

 

The extra mile…..

Breeding code and technician effect are also considered in Concept Plus , both these factors alone can account for high levels of variation for sires with limited observations and not accounting for these effects on conception would only reduce overall accuracy. This simple change in addressing fertility data can be the difference in optimising pregnancies and is how Concept Plus  goes the extra mile in providing the most accurate and complete ranking.

 

Concept Plus , the model for SCR

Such is the accuracy of the Concept Plus  program, that US officials adopted this model from their previous NRR model. However, the SCR dataset includes:

  • information from small contemporary groups

SCR uses all information collected via Dairy Software programs, regardless of the herd size so can include low contemporary comparison groups which lowers accuracy.

  • is not exclusive from only herds with high parentage verification

Concept Plus  uses information from Advantage partner herds only. These herds have increased accuracy through parentage verification and high level record keeping, providing a very accurate dataset for calculation

  • does not take into account the Breeding Code and Technician effects within those herds.

There can be vast differences in performance between technicians, Concept Plus  removes this bias by including known technician rates when calculating conception rates. There can also be large differences between breeding codes, by differentiating between them you provide a more accurate semen fertility rating

 

So what does this all mean?

It means that Concept Plus  is the most accurate and reliable semen fertility rating system in the industry and allows us to guarantee high semen fertility sires by removing any poor Concept Plus  rated bulls from our team. In fact, the SCR rating confirms this with Alta sires showing the smallest variation for semen fertility from all the major studs. Moreover, Alta also has the highest overall average amongst this group on SCR.

You can use Concept Plus  sires with confidence knowing that they will deliver between 2 and 5% higher than the average conception on your farm. Click on the link at the bottom for a complete list of Concept Plus  sires

For more information on how Concept Plus  sires from Alta can help get more cows pregnant in your herd, contact your local Alta representative below.

Regional Genetic consultants:

Tony Simpson – Northern Vic/NSW and WA

Peter Clifford – Western Victoria/SA

Jake Harkness – Western Victoria/SA

Callum Moscript – Tasmania/Gippsland

Brett Hazelman – North West Victoria

Julian Pick – National

NAAB CodeNameTPI
011HO11630AltaMORENO2742
011HO11725AltaAMULET2712
011HO11724AltaSTEEL2684
011HO11672AltaKERMIT2667
011HO11821AltaFOREVER2642
011HO11779AltaTOPSHOT2622
011HO11813AltaTOOHOT2619
011HO11652AltaLAMBEAU2552
011HO11747AltaEXEMPLAR2544
011HO11762AltaRINGER2533
NAAB CodeNameJPI
011JE01179VICEROY184
011JE01152REGAL134
011JE01118MARVEL114
011JE01234MACHO111
011JE01195MALACHI98
011JE01122LAYNE97
011JE01213RUFUS87
011JE01150VALSON76
011JE00978KARBALA70
011JE00968APPLEJACK26
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