Disposal Pattern and Its Impact on Milk Production and Herd Size in Karan Fries and Karan Swiss Cows

  • Singh, M.K. (National Dairy Research Institute) ;
  • Gurnani, M. (Division of Cattle Breeding, NDRI)
  • Received : 2004.01.10
  • Accepted : 2004.06.23
  • Published : 2004.09.01


Data on 958 Karan Fries (KF) and 780 Karan Swiss (KS) cows, born during 1974 to 1992 at National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal were evaluated for causes of culling and their impact on milk performance and herd strength. Causes of culling were classified as voluntary culling (low milk yield) and involuntary culling (other than milk yield). The milk yield of cows was evaluated inretrospectively by estimating expected breeding value (EBV) on the basis of first lactation yield (FLY) and all available lactation yield (ALY). The culling rate of KF cows over the years varied from 10.89 (1988) to 33.92% (1991) with an overall average of 20.96% and in KS from 19.91 (1984) to 33.74% (1989) with an overall average of 25.01%. Reproductive disorders, teat and udder problems, low milk production, health and locomotive disorders were the major reasons of culling accounted respectively for 5.56, 4.97, 4.61, 3.18 and 2.24% of herd strength in KF cows. The corresponding causes of culling were 6.20, 6.26, 7.69, 1.49 and 2.67% of herd strength in KS cows. The involuntary culling of cows accounted for 82.4% in K F and 76.1% in KS cows of total culling. The average annual disposal rate in KF and KS was 26 and 30% whereas annual replacement rate was 24 and 26% respectively. The EBV of involuntary culled cows on the basis of FLY and ALY was 3,111 and 3,515 kg in KF; and 2,669 and 2,940 kg in KS cows respectively. The EBV of selected cows on the basis of FLY and ALY was 3,242 and 3,549 kg in KF and 2,893 and 3,245 kg in KS cows respectively. The average breeding value of involuntary culled cows was not significantly different from selected cows in both the herds. The high rate of involuntary culling of potential cows might be major factor responsible for declined performance and size in these herds. The results indicated that higher genetic gain (2.14% of herd average in KF and 3.49% of herd average in KS) could be obtained by restricting the involuntary culling (50% of total culling) through improved management practices and increasing replacement rate.


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