Abstract

The objective of the present study was to investigate calf health and survival. Data of 2740 Charolais calves, born in 16 French farms and observed from birth until 30 d of age wereanalyzed. Both direct and maternal genetic parameters were estimated for vitality of the calf at birth (NV), survival at 30d (Surv), umbilical infections and diarrhea for 2 age slots: 0-5d and 6-20d (respectively, Umb1, Diar1, Umb2, Diar2). Direct and maternal heritabilities ranged respectively from 0 to 0.081 and from 0 to 0.096. Maternal genetic effects were clearly more important to explain health performance than direct genetic effects for Surv, Diar1 and Umb2. Genetic correlations were estimated with large standard errors and varied markedly between traits varied strongly (from 0 to 1 in absolute values) depending on traits, age slot for a given trait and the nature of the genetic effects considered, direct or maternal. Therefore, the question of the priority arises for the breeding objective because all health traits will be difficult to improve simultaneously in Charolais cattle. Keywords: diarrhea, health, mortality, navel illness, umbilical infection, vigor

Aurélie Vinet, Hélène Leclerc, Florence Marquis, Florence Phocas

Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume Biology - Disease Resistance 1, , 573, 2018
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