Dovea Genetics: The story so far

The headquarters and bull stud of Dovea Genetics is housed in Dovea Demesne. This was formerly owned by the Trant family, who were of Norman origin and purchased lands in Tipperary in 1748.

In the 1940s, Dovea House and the surrounding farm was bought by Centenary Co-operative. In 1952, over 50 co-operatives in the area became members of the newly-formed South Eastern Cattle Breeding Society Limited to provide an AI service to its members.

The AI service initially offered its customers dual-purpose Dairy Shorthorn and Aberdeen Angus and Hereford beef breeds. The Friesian breed was introduced in 1955 and Holstein genetics were introduced in the early 1980s through purchasing bulls on the continent and Holstein semen from different AI companies worldwide.

In the early 1970s, Dovea was at the forefront in importing different continental beef breeds like Charolais, Limousin and Blonde d’Aquitaine from France and Simmental from Austria and Germany.

Dovea today

Today the business has come a long way since its farm beginnings and is now one of Ireland’s leading suppliers of bovine semen.

The company sells semen directly to thousands of farmers who carry out their own DIY AI. In addition to the Irish market, Dovea has a growing global reach. It currently provides high-quality Irish bovine semen to some 30 countries worldwide. The export semen sales is a wonderful success story which showcases Irish genetics on a global stage.

Delfur Decider (FZD) bull calf on Vláďa Chytka’s farm in the Czech Republic

The company also established Dovea Genetics UK Ltd over a year ago to sell semen directly to farmers in the UK.

In Ireland, the company has 150 licensed AI technicians, who provide an AI service around the country. The AI technicians are highly trained and closely monitored by Dovea to ensure high conception rates at farm level. If you wish to find your local AI technician, contact Dovea.

The bull stud houses in excess of 120 bulls, which produce semen in a controlled environment. This activity is monitored and audited by the Department of Agriculture.

A small number of the bulls are sent abroad to other AI centres in order to obtain sexed semen for the growing Irish market.

Breeding programmes

Dovea Genetics currently has a dairy and beef breeding programme in operation to enable it to identify the best dairy and beef bulls.

The dairy breeding programme takes a multi-faceted approach.

  1. A large and comprehensive Genomics Programme, where thousands of bull calves are genotyped annually. Only the highest-EBI and well-balanced calves for milk, milk solids, fertility, health and maintenance are purchased for its breeding programme and enter into Dovea’s AI stud.
  2. A number of outcross, pure Friesian bulls are purchased annually. Dovea Genetics has the largest pure Friesian testing programme in Ireland; resulting in the largest selection of pure Friesian bulls available.
  3. When it comes to Holstein semen, Dovea has access to some of the best semen from international AI companies. This approach allows Dovea to select Holstein bulls suitable for the Irish market.
  4. Crossbreeding: Dovea imports semen from many of the breeds for crossbreeding. Dovea is the sole agent for the Norwegian Red breed in Ireland, which has seen a major increase in popularity in recent years. Dovea has recently commenced a Jersey and crossbred bulls programme to meet this market demand.

The beef programme purchases bulls annually for the following markets: easy calving; beef on dairy cows; terminal; and maternal.

The bulls are purchased within and across Ireland and it revolves around buying the best young bulls in each breed from performance test stations, on farms, at shows and sales annually. The growing dairy-beef market is a large focus for the company at present, as it is the fastest growing market.

What Dovea Genetics offers?

In addition to the above, Dovea provides a nationwide liquid nitrogen delivery service to farming and non-farming businesses.

The full range of AI equipment is also supplied. The company trains farmers for DIY at its headquarters in Dovea, Thurles, Co. Tipperary, and Manorhamilton, Co. Leitrim.

More information

If you would like further information or are interested in finding out what beef and dairy bulls Dovea Genetics has to offer, Click here