An outline and preliminary results of a selection experiment on feed intake, which was started in 1982/1983 in The Netherlands, is described. The objectives were: - To measure the effectiveness of continued selection for feed intake and to measure correlated responses. - To estimate the relationship between feed intake and efficiency of rearing heifers (growing period) and lactating cows. A divergent selection experiment of two generations was conducted for roughage intake (120-365 days) of young potential A.I.-bulls. In total 38 bulls will be used during 5 years. The number of heifers reared per generation will be 180 and lactating cows about 150. The first results of two batches showed a difference in roughage intake of 4.8% during the rearing period (age: 44-60 weeks). The selection differential of the sires was about 26%. This implies a selection response estimate of 35%. This response was positively correlated with growth and feed conversion.
Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume XI. Genetics of reproduction, lactation, growth, adaptation, disease, and parasite resistance., , 285–290, 1986
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