As peak spring calving has now passed on many dairy and beef farms around the country, it is important that farmers do not lose sight of the importance of recording important breeding data, according to the ICBF.
While the ICBF acknowledges that spring can be a busy and stressful time for farmers with an endless list of tasks to be done, it also says that ensuring that data (namely sires and calving ease) is recorded comprehensively and accurately is vital, not only to the work that ICBF does, but also to the development of our agri-food industry going forward.
According to the ICBF, this will in turn lead to more informed breeding decisions which will leave more profitable stock on farms and increase output at both farm and processor levels.
For this reason, it also says that people across the industry that find themselves in regular contact with farmers e.g. agri advisors, breed society representatives, AI company reps and technicians etc. need to constantly stress the importance of recording basic breeding information when registering calves.
The ICBF also says that any farmers that still register calves on the white cards which come with the tags, should be encouraged to switch to an animal events book or, where possible, to register calves online through www.agfood.ie or through a farm software package.
“Better data recording leads to more accurate genetic indexes.”
The animal events book and online methods allow for much more comprehensive data recording at calf registration, it says.
Animal events books can be ordered by calling 1850 625 626. Online registration can be set up by going to the Department of Agriculture & Food website (agfood) or contacting your farm software provider.