The chance of getting a cow pregnant is influenced by a range of factors, many of which are related to herd management and environment. Genetics also plays a small yet important role in fertility. On the female side, Daughter Fertility is routinely evaluated as a functional trait for genetic selection. Semen Fertility, on the other hand, is a non-genetic evaluation calculated by Canadian Dairy Network (CDN) using semen performance data from the field. Recent improvements have been made to the Semen Fertility evaluation system and will be implemented by CDN effective the August 2013 genetic evaluation release.
Fertility Decisions: Long-term versus Short-term Impact
Selection for Daughter Fertility (DF) is a decision with long term impact. Over time, selection for DF will gradually boost your herd’s genetic potential for female fertility. Selection of sires based on their Semen Fertility rating is a decision with short term impact. When used as a mating sire, a bull with above average Semen Fertility, or a higher 56-day non-return rate (NRR), will increase the likelihood of conception.
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