Riddle me this on EPD's

Breed your cows to the best bulls in the nation!
hornedfrogbbq
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 107
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2018 5:36 pm

Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby hornedfrogbbq » Mon Sep 17, 2018 8:58 pm

It is amazing to me, as I am working through literally 100's (and by January thousands) of bulls every year...and look at their dams, how many have low CEM and moderate HP rates and are pathfinders. I am not naive and we have seen EPD's be completely off but for a female that is that proven, to have low scores there but be as fertile as the mesopotamia and their progeny to score so well....it just goes to show - believe the real life outcomes. The rest is the college football line...
0 x

LCBulls
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 95
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2018 1:18 am

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby LCBulls » Mon Sep 17, 2018 9:38 pm

I agree, I think the only EPDs that are somewhat accurate are CE, BW, WW, YW. And even those can change a ton.
I still think the best selection tool is your eyeballs, and all the production weights and progeny.
0 x

User avatar
Son of Butch
GURU
GURU
Posts: 5366
Joined: Mon Aug 30, 2010 6:44 pm
Location: Frost Bite Falls, Minnesota

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby Son of Butch » Mon Sep 17, 2018 9:55 pm

hornedfrogbbq wrote:It is amazing to me, as I am working through literally 100's (and by January thousands) of bulls every year...and look at their dams, how many have low CEM and moderate HP rates and are pathfinders. I am not naive and we have seen EPD's be completely off but for a female that is that proven, to have low scores there but be as fertile...

Without bothering to compile the data on your literally 100's and % with pathfinder dams, it remains anecdotal evidence.
(You need to do the math to prove a trend let alone a fact.)
Wouldn't 1/2 of all cows be expected to be below breed average?

What do you consider a 'proven' dam.... 4 calves, 6 calves? 12?
Would you consider a bull proven with less than 20 calves?

Poor breeding stock selection is the fault of the person doing the selection and not the fault of EPD's.
comparing progeny weights from a herd in Florida to a herd in North Dakota is apples to oranges.
3 x

hornedfrogbbq
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 107
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2018 5:36 pm

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby hornedfrogbbq » Mon Sep 17, 2018 10:16 pm

Son of Butch wrote:
hornedfrogbbq wrote:It is amazing to me, as I am working through literally 100's (and by January thousands) of bulls every year...and look at their dams, how many have low CEM and moderate HP rates and are pathfinders. I am not naive and we have seen EPD's be completely off but for a female that is that proven, to have low scores there but be as fertile...

Without bothering to compile the data on your literally 100's and % with pathfinder dams, it remains anecdotal evidence.
(You need to do the math to prove a trend let alone a fact.)
Wouldn't 1/2 of all cows be expected to be below breed average?

What do you consider a 'proven' dam.... 4 calves, 6 calves? 12?
Would you consider a bull proven with less than 20 calves?

Poor breeding stock selection is the fault of the person doing the selection and not the fault of EPD's.
comparing progeny weights from a herd in Florida to a herd in North Dakota is apples to oranges.



Agreed. I'm currently looking at the Connealy sale. I don't think they have a crappy herd. Their pathfinder dams have a good track record. I'm just wondering why an EPD doesn't adjust to the actual numbers. It would be hard to believe a pathfinder dam has a negative CEM. Yet that is what i see on one of these bulls...and multiple pathfinder dams with less than stellar maternal numbers.

I just thought the EPD's would adjust more with real registrations and outcomes. I'm not comparing weights. I'm comparing HP and CEM. I mean, i'm doing the other but still...the question isn't on WW, YW or frame score. Just on "fertility" and maternal characteristics. So i think the question would be valid if in FL or TX or ND. Pathfinders are supposed to be proven mommas. Maybe not when you move them to a different part of the country but these numbers are based on their life, presumably, in the same place, same grass, same conditions...year in and out...to become a pathfinder. Or am i misunderstanding the EPD's or your answer?
0 x

LCBulls
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 95
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2018 1:18 am

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby LCBulls » Mon Sep 17, 2018 10:40 pm

Son of Butch wrote:
hornedfrogbbq wrote:It is amazing to me, as I am working through literally 100's (and by January thousands) of bulls every year...and look at their dams, how many have low CEM and moderate HP rates and are pathfinders. I am not naive and we have seen EPD's be completely off but for a female that is that proven, to have low scores there but be as fertile...

Without bothering to compile the data on your literally 100's and % with pathfinder dams, it remains anecdotal evidence.
(You need to do the math to prove a trend let alone a fact.)
Wouldn't 1/2 of all cows be expected to be below breed average?

What do you consider a 'proven' dam.... 4 calves, 6 calves? 12?
Would you consider a bull proven with less than 20 calves?

Poor breeding stock selection is the fault of the person doing the selection and not the fault of EPD's.
comparing progeny weights from a herd in Florida to a herd in North Dakota is apples to oranges.


I trust proven EPDs with hundreds or thousands of progeny records. The problem is with the unproven or slightly “proven” EPDs. They can have very large swings, Even after genomic testing.
That being said, I think that there can be huge differences between bulls and cows that have almost identical epds. There is just no way to measure certain traits.
EPD’s are a tool that in my opinion is over utilized. I do think they are important and are a guide on what to expect.
If EPDs were the most important factor, then nobody should use any Sires without thousands of progeny because they are the only EPDs that won’t change much at all and are accurate.
1 x

Ebenezer
GURU
GURU
Posts: 1132
Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2015 12:46 pm
Location: Piedmont of SC

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby Ebenezer » Tue Sep 18, 2018 7:48 am

An opinion again, but without some efforts to linebreed and/or develop prepotency by other means the EPDs will rightly reflect only the current generation. Pathfinder status is fine but can be manipulated to achieve success. Instead of pathfinder as SOB mentioned, I'd rather have all calves ratio 100 rather than 85 to 115, 90 to 110, ...
3 x

elkwc
GURU
GURU
Posts: 1175
Joined: Mon Apr 28, 2014 10:21 pm

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby elkwc » Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:08 am

hornedfrogbbq wrote:It is amazing to me, as I am working through literally 100's (and by January thousands) of bulls every year...and look at their dams, how many have low CEM and moderate HP rates and are pathfinders. I am not naive and we have seen EPD's be completely off but for a female that is that proven, to have low scores there but be as fertile as the mesopotamia and their progeny to score so well....it just goes to show - believe the real life outcomes. The rest is the college football line...


We have found using actual numbers of the animal being considered, actual numbers on the dam of animal being considered works best for us. I’ve had very respected breeders tell me they only use EPD’s when comparing calves from the same group. I also look at production records including calving frequency and at what age the dam was removed from the herd.
3 x

NEFarmwife
Trail Boss
Trail Boss
Posts: 412
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2017 6:33 pm

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby NEFarmwife » Tue Sep 18, 2018 7:54 pm

When we get a sale book that we are interested in attending, I go through quite a selection process. First, will she calve in our window? No? Gone! Then I cross out extremes like -9DOC., 5.0BW, 38Milk, etc... Now, what are we striving for? Ok... lot 4, 8, 10, etc... fit within our criteria and I like their pedigrees.

Once I’ve done that, we may look online to see if they have a video where my husband will look at the way they walk, tailheads, etc... and we will make note of that. So then we can see them more in person and determine whether it was just a poor video or a problem.

We’ll have 4-5 that we really like before we view them but we walk thru everything (bred heifers is what we focus on) and only 2 of the 5 we liked on paper, actually look great in person. However, we added two more that we loved in person. So we generally go for those. If we get outbid, we move on to the next. We also have prices as to what we feel each is worth and that’s our max.

So while numbers play a big part in narrowing down our selection, the way they perform in person is also a top priority.
2 x

User avatar
SPH
Rancher
Rancher
Posts: 535
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 8:47 pm
Location: Iowa
Contact:

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby SPH » Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:26 pm

LCBulls wrote:I agree, I think the only EPDs that are somewhat accurate are CE, BW, WW, YW. And even those can change a ton.
I still think the best selection tool is your eyeballs, and all the production weights and progeny.


I'll even narrow that down more and say that CE and BW are about the only EPDs that seem to be the most useful and more accurate. I know the bulls we've used over the years have held pretty true to those numbers, if the CE and BW are on the higher ends more times than not they've thrown heavier calves at birth and so do their daughters. Also pays to take note of the accuracy % if the EPD, the more proven and more used bulls are going to have higher accuracy due to more raw weights turned in on their progeny. Good breeders will have weights and data on animals they raise if you inquire on them too, if they can't provide that kind of info to you it sure makes you wonder what they may be hiding.

EPDs are just 1 of many tools to use for selection, they were never intended to be a fail safe method of selection but unfortunately some out there lean too much on them. Even within our own herd I could show you a cow with some of the lower EPDs in our herd that has been a better cow for us than one with much better EPDs. I put more weight into the performance pedigree numbers on the Hereford registrations. Those ratios are based off of raw data collected on contemporary groups. When I look at a bull or female that has been in production for awhile but has little to no performance pedigree data I pause and wonder why there is not more data recorded on them. If you have a standout animal you would want that reflected on their papers.

All our sale bulls we DNA test for defects and get weights, measurements, and carcass ultrasound data at their yearling BSE as we have nothing to hide and we have that found buyers will value that over any EPD you put in front of them. All that data we report does increase the accuracy of our animals EPDs too. EPDS are only as reliable as the data that is behind them so in the purebred business it is beneficial to be turning in your weights, measurements, and ultrasound scans on your bulls and steers you retained ownership of through harvest otherwise your EPDs will have low accuracy values.
1 x

hornedfrogbbq
Cowhand
Cowhand
Posts: 107
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2018 5:36 pm

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby hornedfrogbbq » Wed Sep 19, 2018 10:24 am

SPH wrote:
LCBulls wrote:I agree, I think the only EPDs that are somewhat accurate are CE, BW, WW, YW. And even those can change a ton.
I still think the best selection tool is your eyeballs, and all the production weights and progeny.


I'll even narrow that down more and say that CE and BW are about the only EPDs that seem to be the most useful and more accurate. I know the bulls we've used over the years have held pretty true to those numbers, if the CE and BW are on the higher ends more times than not they've thrown heavier calves at birth and so do their daughters. Also pays to take note of the accuracy % if the EPD, the more proven and more used bulls are going to have higher accuracy due to more raw weights turned in on their progeny. Good breeders will have weights and data on animals they raise if you inquire on them too, if they can't provide that kind of info to you it sure makes you wonder what they may be hiding.

EPDs are just 1 of many tools to use for selection, they were never intended to be a fail safe method of selection but unfortunately some out there lean too much on them. Even within our own herd I could show you a cow with some of the lower EPDs in our herd that has been a better cow for us than one with much better EPDs. I put more weight into the performance pedigree numbers on the Hereford registrations. Those ratios are based off of raw data collected on contemporary groups. When I look at a bull or female that has been in production for awhile but has little to no performance pedigree data I pause and wonder why there is not more data recorded on them. If you have a standout animal you would want that reflected on their papers.

All our sale bulls we DNA test for defects and get weights, measurements, and carcass ultrasound data at their yearling BSE as we have nothing to hide and we have that found buyers will value that over any EPD you put in front of them. All that data we report does increase the accuracy of our animals EPDs too. EPDS are only as reliable as the data that is behind them so in the purebred business it is beneficial to be turning in your weights, measurements, and ultrasound scans on your bulls and steers you retained ownership of through harvest otherwise your EPDs will have low accuracy values.



I can't tell you how much I love your post. So, "riddle me this" then - WHY DON'T THE BIG SEED PRODUCERS CARRY SOME CALVES THROUGH THE SYSTEM AND RELEASE THE DATA? There are ways to prove marbling and ways to prove scoring on the rail and ways to prove gain in a feedlot. Why don't more huge seed producers spend time showing the proof. I'm not a huge Gardiner user...we don't have any of their cattle...but they spend a bunch of money on doing just this and then promoting it. I'm sure there are still ways to game ANY system...but having real world data from a herd would be encouraging.
1 x

NEFarmwife
Trail Boss
Trail Boss
Posts: 412
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2017 6:33 pm

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby NEFarmwife » Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:05 am

hornedfrogbbq wrote:
SPH wrote:
LCBulls wrote:I agree, I think the only EPDs that are somewhat accurate are CE, BW, WW, YW. And even those can change a ton.
I still think the best selection tool is your eyeballs, and all the production weights and progeny.


I'll even narrow that down more and say that CE and BW are about the only EPDs that seem to be the most useful and more accurate. I know the bulls we've used over the years have held pretty true to those numbers, if the CE and BW are on the higher ends more times than not they've thrown heavier calves at birth and so do their daughters. Also pays to take note of the accuracy % if the EPD, the more proven and more used bulls are going to have higher accuracy due to more raw weights turned in on their progeny. Good breeders will have weights and data on animals they raise if you inquire on them too, if they can't provide that kind of info to you it sure makes you wonder what they may be hiding.

EPDs are just 1 of many tools to use for selection, they were never intended to be a fail safe method of selection but unfortunately some out there lean too much on them. Even within our own herd I could show you a cow with some of the lower EPDs in our herd that has been a better cow for us than one with much better EPDs. I put more weight into the performance pedigree numbers on the Hereford registrations. Those ratios are based off of raw data collected on contemporary groups. When I look at a bull or female that has been in production for awhile but has little to no performance pedigree data I pause and wonder why there is not more data recorded on them. If you have a standout animal you would want that reflected on their papers.

All our sale bulls we DNA test for defects and get weights, measurements, and carcass ultrasound data at their yearling BSE as we have nothing to hide and we have that found buyers will value that over any EPD you put in front of them. All that data we report does increase the accuracy of our animals EPDs too. EPDS are only as reliable as the data that is behind them so in the purebred business it is beneficial to be turning in your weights, measurements, and ultrasound scans on your bulls and steers you retained ownership of through harvest otherwise your EPDs will have low accuracy values.



I can't tell you how much I love your post. So, "riddle me this" then - WHY DON'T THE BIG SEED PRODUCERS CARRY SOME CALVES THROUGH THE SYSTEM AND RELEASE THE DATA? There are ways to prove marbling and ways to prove scoring on the rail and ways to prove gain in a feedlot. Why don't more huge seed producers spend time showing the proof. I'm not a huge Gardiner user...we don't have any of their cattle...but they spend a bunch of money on doing just this and then promoting it. I'm sure there are still ways to game ANY system...but having real world data from a herd would be encouraging.


I think Angus Link will start to provide those numbers. It’ll just take a little time and I wish it wasn’t so expensive per head. Sure the feeders may see an additional $ from their grades and cattlemen who use it to promote their herds to the feedlots.

We A.I. all our commercial cattle with timed heats. Over 75% of them will be conceived thru AI. This Angus Link, if we were to jump on board, would then send that information from our herd when graded at slaughter to the sire owners. I assume at that point, that data would be incorporated into the carcass data on EPDs?

This is my understanding, I could be off base.
0 x

User avatar
SPH
Rancher
Rancher
Posts: 535
Joined: Sun May 05, 2013 8:47 pm
Location: Iowa
Contact:

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby SPH » Wed Sep 19, 2018 12:22 pm

hornedfrogbbq wrote:
I can't tell you how much I love your post. So, "riddle me this" then - WHY DON'T THE BIG SEED PRODUCERS CARRY SOME CALVES THROUGH THE SYSTEM AND RELEASE THE DATA? There are ways to prove marbling and ways to prove scoring on the rail and ways to prove gain in a feedlot. Why don't more huge seed producers spend time showing the proof. I'm not a huge Gardiner user...we don't have any of their cattle...but they spend a bunch of money on doing just this and then promoting it. I'm sure there are still ways to game ANY system...but having real world data from a herd would be encouraging.


I completely agree with you although if some of those guys don't retain ownership in their feeder calves through harvest they aren't going to be getting that data probably but if they are there should be no shame in publishing that like they do their seedstock data. I do think there are some good big seedstock guys out there though that do a good job of putting this kind of data out there for their production sale animals. I have seen some that have all the weights, measurements, and ultrasound data right there in the catalog for all to see when not everyone else would go to that extent. As far as the feedlot cattle goes that would be great data to have available too. I've seen it on at least one guy's website that has all his feedlot data published back to 2009 on anywhere from 15-30 steers and 6-12 heifers he retained ownership and fed out at a feedlot. He's not a "big seed producer" guy with a production sale but he does sell some seedstock private treaty and having all that feedlot data out there for all to see surely is not hurting him.
1 x

Ebenezer
GURU
GURU
Posts: 1132
Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2015 12:46 pm
Location: Piedmont of SC

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby Ebenezer » Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:11 pm

WHY DON'T THE BIG SEED PRODUCERS CARRY SOME CALVES THROUGH THE SYSTEM AND RELEASE THE DATA?

1-Maybe the data and the EPDs will not match? There's more excitement to wonder what's behind Door #2 than to take what is on display from behind Door #1. Many sales are based on potential rather than proof.

2-Maybe the need to send 20 animals of a sire, a family or what ever division to make the basic statically sound sample size is too much cost or too many potential sale animals sold a steers or market heifers rather than being in the production sale. And potential sales of breeding stock with solid genetic proof from sibs from a new sire would have to lag a year to let the first group be fed out and slaughtered.

Here's the question for me and maybe for you: if ABC Big Purebred Ranch proved the value of sale bulls by testing half sib steer mates in a feedlot, would you still want the breeding bull you buy to be fed heavily to prove anything or could you buy him as a forage developed bull? We have the ingrained custom of feeding bulls like steers and then folks wonder why they do not last so well, are not so fertile, melt while in use, ... Just curious - thanks.
1 x

elkwc
GURU
GURU
Posts: 1175
Joined: Mon Apr 28, 2014 10:21 pm

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby elkwc » Mon Sep 24, 2018 7:38 pm

Ebenezer wrote:
WHY DON'T THE BIG SEED PRODUCERS CARRY SOME CALVES THROUGH THE SYSTEM AND RELEASE THE DATA?

1-Maybe the data and the EPDs will not match? There's more excitement to wonder what's behind Door #2 than to take what is on display from behind Door #1. Many sales are based on potential rather than proof.

2-Maybe the need to send 20 animals of a sire, a family or what ever division to make the basic statically sound sample size is too much cost or too many potential sale animals sold a steers or market heifers rather than being in the production sale. And potential sales of breeding stock with solid genetic proof from sibs from a new sire would have to lag a year to let the first group be fed out and slaughtered.

Here's the question for me and maybe for you: if ABC Big Purebred Ranch proved the value of sale bulls by testing half sib steer mates in a feedlot, would you still want the breeding bull you buy to be fed heavily to prove anything or could you buy him as a forage developed bull? We have the ingrained custom of feeding bulls like steers and then folks wonder why they do not last so well, are not so fertile, melt while in use, ... Just curious - thanks.


Again I agree with what you state. Many like to talk the talk but they don't want to take the risk to feed out cattle to prove how their genetics will perform in the real world. I have posted before about the breeder who I bought a bred cow from and have retained the calf she was carrying when I purchased her. This breeder has fed out all calves and yearlings that don't make the cut for several years. He has data on everything he has ever fed. The progeny of the bulls he has raised has consistently out performed the progeny of the top AI bulls. The sire of our bull sired a bull that topped the Green Springs test a year ago. He has fed bulls from OK to Montana and several places in between. He does some RFI testing now. It has took a while but the progeny of home raised bulls now sell as well if not better than that of the AI sires. Most of his customer base is return customers. Those from his home raised sires consistently grade 100% choice and are at the top for cost of gain and net profit. I didn't expect the growth we've seen and we don't push or grain ours. Our bull was never pushed. He weighed 1,000 lbs at 8 months over 1,260 at a year and has kept growing. Was ran on wheat after he was weaned. None since. His calves have natural growth on momma's milk and grass. I feel that it takes time to build a customer base that appreciates and that is willing to pay for cattle that have the real data to back up what they will do instead of some EPD that estimates what they will do. I tried to buy another bull from their home raised sires this year. One brought $12,000. The other one I had marked brought $6,500. To me it is proof that at least some commercial breeders are seeking cattle that will make them money with real proof to back them up.
0 x

NEFarmwife
Trail Boss
Trail Boss
Posts: 412
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2017 6:33 pm

Re: Riddle me this on EPD's

Postby NEFarmwife » Wed Sep 26, 2018 9:38 am

Pondered something last night. Do you think they'll ever have a mortality rating/score? They collect that info when you cancel your animal. I am curious as to whether we'll ever see something along those lines.
0 x


Return to “Artificial Insemination (AI) for Cattle”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google Adsense [Bot], morancher, T & B farms and 23 guests