Expected progeny differences (EPDs) from the fall 2007 international Limousin genetic evaluation now are available through various features of the North American Limousin Foundation (NALF) Web site (www.nalf.org). Pedigree and performance records for more than 2 million Limousin cattle in the United States and Canada are the basis for the latest sire summary, which includes nearly 2,400 bulls.
In addition to EPDs for 13 economically relevant traits, the evaluation includes NALF's Mainstream Terminal Index ($MTI), which it introduced two years ago. The index simplifies mating decisions through simultaneous consideration of many traits, helping rank animals for expected net economic merit. The $MTI combines calf survival, weaning and yearling weights, feedlot average daily gain (ADG), feed intake, dressing percentage, yield grade, and marbling.
“Our semiannual evaluations provide Limousin breeders and their commercial customers with helpful selection tools for genetic improvement,” said Lauren Hyde, Ph.D., director of performance programs for NALF. “The EPDs and index predict genetic rankings among animals, and they are the most accurate predictors of genetic merit.”
Tools on the NALF Web site that interface with the genetic evaluation include the Sire Selector, pedigree and EPD lookup, and the Limousin Exchange Bull Listing Service. The site's “Programs” section includes the latest EPD statistics, percentiles and trends; sire-summary qualifications; general sire listing; trait leaders; and downloadable sire summary. The fall edition also includes the breed's list of Focus Dams, which are females with proven reproductive performance and producing ability.
The North American Limousin Foundation (www.nalf.org), headquartered
in Centennial, Colo., provides programs and services – including genetic evaluation of 5,000 active sires – to more than 4,000 members and their commercial customers. The Limousin breed and its Lim Flex® hybrid
lead the beef industry in muscle-growth efficiency and ideally complement British