Effect of pre-weaning selection on estimates of genetic parameters and breeding values for post-weaning growth rate of beef bulls on test

M. L. Mashiloane, K. A. Nephawe, A. Maiwashe, D. Norris, J. W. Ngambi

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Data on South African Angus cattle consisting of 45 259 records on weaning weight (WWT), 4 360 records on average daily gain from on-farm test (ADG-D) and 1 118 from centralized test (ADG-C) were analyzed to evaluate the effect of pre-weaning selection on estimates of genetic parameters and subsequent estimated breeding values (EBV) for post-weaning average daily gain. (Co)variance components and genetic parameters for weaning weight (WWT), ADG-C and ADG-D were estimated by REML procedures fitting three different animal models. Model 1 was a univariate model of WWT, ADG-C or ADG-D and did not account for the effect of pre-weaning selection on post-weaning ADG. Model 2 was a two-trait model of WWT and either ADG-C or ADG-D. Model 3 was a multi-trait animal model including WWT, ADG-C and ADG-D. Estimates of heritability for ADG-C were 0. 39 ± 0. 080, 0. 42 ± 0. 060 and 0. 44 ± 0. 010 from Model 1, 2 and 3 respectively. Corresponding estimates for ADG-D were 0. 18 ± 0. 020, 0. 19 ± 0. 020 and 0. 21 ± 0. 020 respectively. Rank correlations based on EBVs for ADG-C for all bulls were 0. 92, 0. 83 and 0. 94 for Model 1 vs. Model 2, Model 1 vs. Model 3, and Model 2 vs. Model 3, respectively and they indicated a possible re-ranking of bulls when including or excluding a correlated pre-weaning trait. Rank correlations for ADG-D also followed a similar trend. Inclusion of pre-weaning information in genetic analysis for post-weaning average daily gain is necessary to account for selection at weaning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1723-1730
Number of pages8
JournalTropical Animal Health and Production
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2009


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Food Animals
  • Animal Science and Zoology

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