Fleckvieh sire selection and daughters
These videos show very well proportioned and productive daughters of BFG Meru. The most important attributes to pursue in the modern dairy industry is a cow with a good feet and legs and healthy udder. Mating choices are best made with sires that build on these two characterisitcs in this example.
When you see good phenotypic trait expression in the daughters and review the heritability of stature – the sire choice shines through in these daughters. Stature heritability is higher than most. In the pedigree of Meru , you can see this on the maternal side with BFG Meru’s sire BFG Ruap. BFG Ruap, BFG Meru and BFG Merowinger who is a son of BFG Meru have held or improved on exterior traits. Having seen daughters of BFG Ruap going back 20 years, the daughters of his son BFG Meru impress me. Merowinger also impresses with beautiful animals.
This blood line – “Metz” is outstanding in the above described context of stature and exterior. The hard work of Bayern gentik`s critical sire selection and importation of the top sires into North America is here to help the modern dairy cow with her biggest problem issues from a production limiting disease perspective as well as animal welfare and husbandry:
Lameness and mastitis!
Merowinger is a son of BFG Meru and he in turn is a son of BFG Ruap
A little bit more on heritability as it relates to the above example:
Heritability is the proportion of variation in a trait due to genetic factors, and is measured in numbers ranging from 0 to 1.0. The higher the number, the more heritable the trait is, and the faster one can make genetic progress by selecting for that trait. Traits with very low heritability, those less than 0.1, do not offer much opportunity for rapid improvement. This is a blanket statement and by no means captures the complexity of genetics. The appended research article below makes some key statements applicable to the “Metz” bloodline and our three sires BFG Ruap, BFG Meru and BFG Merowinger.
Key statements from the Fleckvieh research paper below: “The results imply that cows with straighter
legs and pastern, normal hock and lower hoof angle show longer functional longevity. Fore udder length, rear udder attachment, and the central ligament were positively correlated with real longevity.”