Crossbreeding leads heifers to milking string faster

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Research presented at the American Dairy Science Association meeting this past July compared the performance of the following crossbreds against Holstein heifers:

  • Jersey X Holstein (JH)
  • Montbeliarde x Holstein (MH)
  • Montbeliarde x (Jersey x Holstein) (MJH)

Heifers born on two University of Minnesota research facilities were evaluated on days to first calving, days to first service, first service conception rate, interval from first service to last service, numbers of services per conception, age at conception and gestation interval to first calving.

After the heifers were mated, the following results were recorded:

  • Age at first breeding was an average of eight days less for JH heifers compared to Holsteins.
  • MJH heifers were 15 days younger at first breeding than Holsteins.
  • MH heifers had a significantly higher conception rate (63.5 percent) than Holsteins (48.4 percent)
  • ·JH heifers conceived 22 days sooner than Holstein heifers
  • MJH heifers were 23 younger days at conception than Holsteins

More research on crossbreeding was presented at the meeting. Access the crossbreeding abstracts.

Source: Dairy Cattle Reproductive Council

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