Tuesday, 1 December 2020
As the season for spring calving approaches, producers running grazing-based systems will be pleased to see three dairy breeds feature in the top five in today's newly published Spring Calving Index (£SCI) ranking.
In number one position is the familiar Danish Jersey, VJ Tester, who offers producers big gains in milk quality, daughter fertility and lifespans, and has an SCI of £477.
The Holstein beneath him, Progenesis Unicorn (SCI £439) will boost milk volume and weight of fat and protein while also reducing cell counts, ahead of the Jersey, VJ Hoeholt Jern James (SCI £426).
Fourth ranking Glamour Boghill Casper (SCI £419) transmits a balance of weight and percentages fat and protein in his production proof, alongside thrifty calves.
Level-pegging in fifth place are the British Friesian, Catlane Caleb, excelling for daughter fertility while the Danish Jersey, Danish VJ Tudvad, offers high milk quality and low cell counts. Both have SCIs of £415.
“Dairy producers favour a variety of different breeds for their spring block calving, grazing based systems, and this £SCI ranking shows numerous breeds could fulfil their requirements, offering a cross-section of traits with which to improve their herds,” says Marco Winters, head of animal genetics for AHDB Dairy.