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Days open and milk production in Friesian cattle: A genetic study



Days open and milk production in Friesian cattle: A genetic study



Investigacion Agraria Produccion y Sanidad Animales 11(3): 253-266



85227 lactations from 20127 friesian cows from the Basque Autonomy Country and the province of Gerone have been used in a genetic study of days open. Days open means are similar for the first four lactations with a range of 115 to 121 days. In the first two lactations the regression coefficient of the milk yield on days open is 44 p.100 greater than the coefficient of later lactation. This is an indication of a greater influence of a small days open interval on milk production on earlier lactations. Heritability of days open is 0.05. This heritability is reduced to 0.01 when milk yield is included as a covariate in the model. The genetic correlation of 0.74 between days open and milk yield is reduced to 0.29 when it's calculated with a model that included milk yield as a covariate. Genetic correlations 0.69 and 0.41, between fat yield and days open follows a similar patter to milk yield and days open. The model used to predict breeding values for production traits should include days open. Correlations between breeding values predicted by model that include days open as a fixed effect with a model that does not include is equal to 0.92 and 0.94 in the cows and bulls populations, respectively. These correlations indicated significative change in the ranking. Coefficient of determination improved 20.7 p.100 and residual variance was 17.3 p.100 smaller when the model included days open as a fixed effect.

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