Geneticist Megan Rolf Shares Her Progress on Developing the Next Big EPD for Water EfficiencyThu, 30 Aug 2018 10:44:17 CDT
Dr. Megan Rolf, is a beef geneticist at Kansas State University. Prior to joining the faculty at K-State, Rolf became involved with a million grant to study water intake for beef cattle and continues her research today with the hope of one day developing an EPD that measures water intake. The hard part, though, has been figuring out how to collect the data she needs to accurately conduct her study.
“It looks like we could collect that data within the framework of existing feed intake trials, so the next key is - are there facilities that have the capability to collect that data and are breed associations interested in taking that data and working it into a national cattle evaluation,” she said. “If breed associations are interested, we’ll continue analyzing our data to look at what other traits might be important to consider along with water intake if we’re to select for that trait.”
Now several years into this project, Rolf is just about to wrap up the data collection phase of her study. She is now beginning to transition into the next phase during which she will start to crunch the numbers and analyze the data to be able to finally draw some conclusions from her work. Once she reaches that point, Rolf can begin to apply that information into a useful form for producers’ disposal.
“One of the things we hope to do is develop a water demand tool (that will help give producers) an idea of how much water their animals might need for a specified time period,” she said. “So, if they’re hauling water and really trying to manage water resources during a drought, they’ll have access to some pretty accurate estimates of how much they might need available at any one time.”
Listen to Rolf talk about her research on measuring the water requirements in cattle and its correlation to genetics, with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays, on today’s Beef Buzz.
The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
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