Anthony Coates has been performance recording his registered cattle since 1970. Eidsvold Station was the the first Santa Gertrudis herd to take this pioneering step. A total of 3286 calves were recorded under the initial weight ratio system of the National Beef Recording Scheme and with the introduction of BREEDPLAN, the recorded calves had increased to 8250 by the end of 1999. BREEDPLAN is Australia's national genetic evaluation system. It is regarded as one of the best in the world.
BREEDPLAN calculates "Estimated Breeding Values" (EBVs) for various traits for each animal in the herd. The EBVs are calculated with the data from the animals own performance, the performance of all known relative, the heritability of each trait and the relationship between the traits, such as correlations between the 200 and 400 day weights. EBVs are expressed in actual units of measurement and are reported as 'positive' or 'negative' relative to the breed base for that trait.
Rick and Anthony use BREEDPLAN EBVs as an aid in the selection of replacement sires and heifers. All registered cattle have Group BREEDPLAN EBVs.
Group Breedplan calculates predictions of genetic merit called EBVs for a range of traits on a national across-herd basis. The EBVs are calculated using information of the animal’s own performance, the performance of all known relatives, the relationships between the traits and the pedigree links between animals and between herds.
EBVs are expressed as plus(+) or minus(–) the given measure (eg. + or – cm for scrotal size). Animals are ranked in comparison to a breed base of 0.
The following EBVs are reported in this catalogue:
Milk (kg): Estimates genetic differences in milk production, expressed as variation in 200 day weight of daughter’s calves. Milk EBVs are generated from 200 day weights.
200 Day Growth (kg): Estimates the genetic differences between animals in live weight at 200 days of age. It is independent of the influence of milk.
400 & 600 Day Weight (kg): Estimate the genetic differences between animals in live weight at 400 and 600 days of age respectively.
Mature Weight (kg): Estimates the genetic differences between animals in live weight at 5 years of age.
Scrotal Size (cm): Estimates the genetic differences between animals in scrotal circumference at 400 days of age.
Eye Muscle Area (cm2): Estimates the genetic differences between animals foe EMA at the 12/13th rib in a 300kg steer carcase.
Rib & Rump Fat (mm): Estimate the genetic differences between animals for fat depth at the 12/13th rib and P8 sites respectively, in a 300kg steer carcase.
Intra–Muscular Fat Percentage (%): IMF% is an estimate of the genetic differences between animals for percent intra-muscular fat (marbling), in a 300kg steer carcase.
An accuracy is presented with every EBV and gives an indication of the amount of information that has been used in the calculation of that EBV. The higher the accuracy the lower the likelihood of change in the animal’s EBV as more information is analysed for that animal and it’s relatives.
Accuracies are calculated by taking into account the following points: