Relationship between profitability and type traits and derivation of economic values for reproduction and survival traits in Chianina beef cows

F. Forabosco, R. Bozzi, P. Boettcher, F. Filippini, P. Bijma, J.A.M. van Arendonk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The objectives of this study were 1) to propose a profit function for Italian Chianina beef cattle; 2) to derive economic values for some biological variables in beef cows, specifically, production expressed as the number of calves born alive per year (NACY), age at the insemination that resulted in the birth of the first calf (FI), and length of productive life (LPL); and 3) to investigate the relationship between the phenotypic profit function and type traits as early predictors of profitability in the Chianina beef cattle population. The average profit was 196/(cow·yr) for the length of productive life (LPL) and was obtained as the difference between the average income of 1,375/(cow·yr) for LPL and costs of 1,178/(cow·yr) of LPL. The mean LPL was equal to 5.97 yr, so the average total phenotypic profit per cow on a lifetime basis was 1,175. A normative approach was used to derive the economic weights for the biological variables. The most important trait was the number of calves born alive (+4.03·cow¿1·yr¿1 and +24.06/cow). An increase of 1 d in LPL was associated with an increase of +0.19/(cow·yr) and +1.65/cow on a lifetime basis. Increasing FI by 1 d decreased profit by 0.42/(cow·yr) and 2.51/cow. Phenotypic profit per cow had a heritability of 0.29. Heritabilities for eight muscularity traits ranged from 0.16 to 0.23, and for the seven body size traits between 0.21 and 0.30. The conformation trait final score can be used as an early predictor of profitability. The sale price of the animal and differences in the revenue and costs of offspring due to muscularity should be included in a future profit function
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2043-2051
JournalJournal of Animal Science
Volume83
Publication statusPublished - 2005

Keywords

  • restricted maximum-likelihood
  • spanish holstein cows
  • dairy-cattle
  • animal-model
  • herd life
  • variance-components
  • genetic evaluation
  • profit equations
  • longevity
  • selection

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