Research Article

Repeatability and genotypic correlations of reproductive and productive traits of crossbred beef cattle dams

Abstract

Beef cattle production requires reproductive efficiency. However, measures of reproductive traits are not usually collected; consequently, correlated traits that could be used as indicators would be useful. We examined associations between measures of reproductive and productive efficiency that could be used as selection indicators. Data from 194 dams of the genetic groups Angus x Nelore, Caracu x Nelore, and Valdostana x Nelore collected over 4 years were used. The reproductive traits analyzed were days to heat (DH), calving interval (CI), days to calving (DC), and pregnancy rate (PR). The productive traits were dam weight (DW), body condition score (BCS), calf weight (CW), and weaning rate (WR). The effects on the model were: year, genetic group, reproductive status (RS), age, reproductive rest, and breed of bull (CW and WR). Multivariate analyses were performed, using the Bayesian approach via Gibbs sampling. We conclude that the reproductive measures are ineffective as selection indicators, whereas using dam weight may be a good alternative.

Beef cattle production requires reproductive efficiency. However, measures of reproductive traits are not usually collected; consequently, correlated traits that could be used as indicators would be useful. We examined associations between measures of reproductive and productive efficiency that could be used as selection indicators. Data from 194 dams of the genetic groups Angus x Nelore, Caracu x Nelore, and Valdostana x Nelore collected over 4 years were used. The reproductive traits analyzed were days to heat (DH), calving interval (CI), days to calving (DC), and pregnancy rate (PR). The productive traits were dam weight (DW), body condition score (BCS), calf weight (CW), and weaning rate (WR). The effects on the model were: year, genetic group, reproductive status (RS), age, reproductive rest, and breed of bull (CW and WR). Multivariate analyses were performed, using the Bayesian approach via Gibbs sampling. We conclude that the reproductive measures are ineffective as selection indicators, whereas using dam weight may be a good alternative.