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Agricultural News

Focus on Fertility and Longevity at the 137th Annual Meeting

Wed, 07 Oct 2020 10:23:33 CDT

 Focus on Fertility and Longevity at the 137th Annual Meeting Improving reproductive function is an important step for both the Angus breed and the cattle industry as a whole. As we grow our knowledge of the bovine genome through genomic technology, haplotypes can be identified that affect many traits. Haplotypes that affect fertility have been identified in dairy breeds since 2011. The strategy shows great promise and as a result, the Association and AGI have been researching haplotypes that can affect the fertility in Angus cattle.

Kent Weigel is Professor and Chair of the Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences at UW-Madison. He holds a research, extension, and teaching appointment and serves a technical consultant for numerous companies and organizations in the dairy genetics industry. His research focuses on genetic selection and genome-guided management programs to improve the productivity, health, fertility, and feed efficiency of dairy cattle using tools such as whole genome selection, advanced reproductive technologies, crossbreeding, electronic data capture systems, and artificial intelligence algorithms.

Dr. Tom Lawlor is the Executive Director of Research and Development at the Holstein Association, USA. Tom received his B.S. degree from the University of Massachusetts, M.S. degree from Montana State University and Ph.D. from Cornell University. Tom works closely with the associationís Genetic Advancement Committee and is a regular contributor to the Journal of Dairy Science. Tom serves as an advisor with the Genetic Evaluation Methods Group to the U.S. Council on Dairy Cattle Breeding; member of Interbullís Technical Committee; and works on single gene traits with the World Holstein Friesian Federation.

Kelli Retallick was raised on her familyís registered-Angus seedstock operation where she remains actively involved in decision making and marketing. Retallick served on the National Junior Angus Board (NJAB) for two years. She joined the Angus team in 2016 as the director of genetic service. Recently, she was promoted to the position of Director of Genetic and Genomic Programs for AGI. Retallick earned her bachelorís degree in animal science from the University of WisconsinĖMadison and went on to complete a masterís degree in animal breeding and genetics at Kansas State University.

As the Business Breed, we have long focused on traits that help the profitability of the Angus cow. In an effort to establish a longevity EPD, a fully optional, easier to use, inventory-based AHIR program is being introduced to collect necessary data. Learn how you can use this whole herd reporting option to complement the MaternalPlus program.

Our panel will include association staff who will detail the inventory-based AHIR program.

The year 2020 was unlike any other for the Association. Hear from our Association staff leaders about the year ahead and the strategic priorities for members and the Association during this session from 10:45 - 11:15 a.m.



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