New panel of 15 Gene Ireland bulls launched by the ICBF
The Gene Ireland programme was launched in autumn 2012 and was established by the ICBF (Irish Cattle Breeding Federation) in conjunction with industry partners.
The breeding programme was launched to improve breeding efficiency at farm level through the boosting of calving intervals and the number of calves produced per cow per year.
It aims to improve genetic information in Irish beef production by recording high-quality data and by testing more progeny from suitable beef bulls.
Over recent days, the ICBF has announced the availability of semen from 15 Gene Ireland bulls at a cost of €5/straw.
Again, the bulls have been selected on their potential to deliver on fertility and milk production. They have also been selected on their growth rate and conformation traits.
An array of bulls from different breeds are available, including: Shorthorn; Limousin; Aubrac; Aberdeen Angus; Simmental; Charolais; Parthenaise; Piedmontese; and Hereford.
All of the bulls available are 5-star on the Replacement Index. The highest ranking bull, Finnlough Finn, has a value of €183, while the average Replacement Index value of the 15 bulls is almost €135.
Additional breeds may be added to the programme during the year. The bulls will be chosen by the farmer and may be mixed breeds or a single breed. However, it is not recommended to use Gene Ireland bulls on maiden heifers.
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