The spring bull sale season is hitting road gear and commercial cattle producers are pouring over bull sale catalogs, mining the data for the best bulls in the offering. Busy cattlemen will now have the most up-to-date information available as they make genetic selections. The Red Angus Association of America (RAAA) has released the 2016 Spring EPDs that evaluate traits from calving ease to performance to carcass merit. The suite of numbers includes tools to select cattle with optimum economic relevance such as stayability, heifer pregnancy and maintenance energy requirements.
The Red Angus breed has been dedicated to Total Herd Reporting (THR) for two decades, creating an accurate database of Red Angus genetics and subsequently, EPDs trusted by ranchers. EPDs are displayed with their in-breed ranking percentile to assist cattle producers with their trait selection decisions.
“With THR data, we are provided with comparisons between all animals in each contemporary group,” said Larry Keenan, RAAA director of breed improvement. “Since EPDs rely on measured variation within a contemporary group, THR provides for reliable EPDs and faster gains in EPD accuracy by ensuring that the variation in the performance of each calf is counted.”
Red Angus’ strong foundation of THR data combined with genomic data from high-density DNA tests provides EPDs with unsurpassed reliability. The information from the genomic data can be as informative as a bull’s first calf crop or a cow’s lifetime production record. And, since the genomic data is incorporated directly into the EPDs, cattle producers don’t have to learn how to interpret new data. The information will be delivered in the form of higher accuracy EPDs.
For more information on EPDs, visit the “Genetics” page on the RAAA website, RedAngus.org. Producers can also access individual animals’ EPDs and breed percentiles, or calculate the projected EPDs of specific matings on the website.