The first Simmental animals were introduced into Australia in 1972. Since then, the breed has increased rapidly in numbers. From the beginning, the breed had a voluntary performance recording system for various traits. The Simmental data-bank is today the largest of any Australian beef breed society and is maintained by the Agricultural Business Research Institute at the University of New England. Besides other characteristics, 200-day weight and 365-day or 550-day weights of calves are recorded. Fewer records were available for growth traits (365-day or 550-day weights) most closely related to a primary production goal in the Australian industry, the slaughter steer. In addition, quite drastic culling may occur at weaning in some herds, especially in seasons when pasture is limiting. Therefore, breeding values calculated by the currently used regressed contemporary comparison procedure (Hammond and Chambers, 1979) might be biased and quite unreliable. A procedure was needed to overcome these deficiencies. Henderson (1975) described the usefulness of the Best Linear Unbiased Prediction (BLUP) method to estimate breeding values for multiple traits with sequential trait selection. This was employed in a way similar to the mixed model multiple-trait analysis for within-herd evaluation of weaning weight and post-weaning gain, described by Poliak and Quaas (1980).

H. U Graser, K. Hammond, A. E McClintock

Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume 7. Symposia (1), , 128–133, 1982
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