Jaegerbomb: Society weighing up changes

The possibility of policy changes in the wake of the Jaegerbomb saga is set to come under discussion at the top tiers of the Limousin breed society.

The next British Limousin Cattle Society council meeting will take place later today.

Some breeders – including the bull’s current owner, Ian Handley – have been calling for changes to be made in light of the situation.

Changes suggested by breeders include mandatory DNA testing for pedigree calves, or tests on all pedigree bulls to be sold.

Ballinloan Jaegerbomb

Ballinloan Jaegerbomb is an up-and-coming AI bull whose pedigree status was temporarily put on hold after doubts were raised surrounding his parentage.

Following DNA tests, it was revealed that the bull’s true dam was in fact Ballinloan Geneva – another pedigree – as opposed to Ballinloan Fruttela, whose name originally appeared on his certificate.

After Handley bought the bull, the breeder realised there had been a mix up in his registration and raised the issue with the society.

Jaegerbomb had been highly successful; in just two years more than 2,000 straws of his semen have been snapped up by breeders.

Semen had been on sale at around £20 a straw (€23) and had sold as far away as Australia. At one point, it was projected that between 10,000 and 20,000 straws would be sold.

Jaegerbomb

Had the situation not been rectified, Handley said compensation to other breeders could have run into the millions – a cost, he said, no farmer could afford.

A spokeswoman for the British Limousin Cattle Society said that more information would be made public once the council meeting takes place later today.

The society had already put a new DNA package and new rules relating to DNA results into place days before the Jaegerbomb situation came to light.

The key points in the changes were:

  • From March 1, all animals DNA tested will automatically be sire-verified (and dam-verified where required); genotyped for Genomic Estimated Breeding Value; and tested for myostatin, colour; and polled or horned status. The cost will be £35/animal plus VAT.
  • From March 1, all test results above will be automatically published;
  • From March 1, all new stock sires and AI sires are to be tested for myostatin;
  • From October 1, all bulls at Premier Collective Sales are to be tested for myostatin at the time of sale entry.