Stellar line-up delivers for Australian farmers

August ABV release highlights:

  • Australia’s highest genomic bull is now the country’s top proven sire.
  • ABS Holsteins are the country’s two top proven sires.
  • Australia’s top genomic Jersey is Gippsland-bred Jersey Gelbeado Park WOODSIDE.
  • Sales of sexed genetics continue to surge with demand for Jersey outcross Forest Glen Craze TRIPP and Holsteins with high-ranking health traits.
  • Australia’s top proven Red sire ticks all the boxes.

Homegrown genomic Jersey sires are leading the pack, while breed-leading Holstein sires have continued their market dominance in the latest Australian Breeding Values (ABV) release. This comes as Norwegian Red, and farmer favourite, ONSTAD-P has claimed the coveted top spot on the Red breed ABV proven sire rankings with a BPI$ of 388.

This August ABV release is one of the most successful for ABS, proving its pursuit of quality sires for Australian conditions is paying dividends. With five of the top 10 Australian proven Holsteins, including the record-breaking polled and A2 sire ABS JERONIMO-P at number one and high type sire De-Su 14030 WRIGLEY-ET in second place, ABS Australia Business Operations Manager Bruce Ronalds said consistency has been the key. “Top Holstein genomic sires have become top proven sires, while big-selling sires such as Rosylane-LLC SPOCK and De-Su 13530 SEVILLE have held their positions and it’s nice to see consistency,” he said. “Farmers already milking daughters of these top Holsteins are telling us they have been so impressed with the progeny, that they want more semen.”

Describing the Jersey genomic offering as the “strongest breed offering” for up to seven years with ABS having five of the top ten genomic Jersey sires, Bruce said a stand-out was the highest-ranked single-P bull in Australia Brookbora BUSHFIELD (CSCBUSHFIELD) at 345 BPI$.

For Red breed enthusiasts, it’s hard to go past ONSTAD-P. He’s been the most popular Red sire in Australia during the past 12 months and now, thanks to the introduction of genomics for Red dairy breeds, his sons have a chance to shine. “Two ONSTAD-P sons are now available in Australia, STORFLOR and JO-ONSTAD, and according to their genomics, they are on track to deliver in the vat – just like their father,” Bruce said. “Genomics isn’t available for daughter fertility but, given the strength of this vital trait in ONSTAD-P’s proof at 108, we are expecting big things from the next generation.” Both genomic sires are more than 250 BPI$ which puts them amongst the best of other overseas bulls.

ONSTAD-P progeny are spread throughout Australia, and this isn’t surprising as he’s ranked 300 ASI – an indicator of extremely high production – 107 for type, 104 for udders and 108 for daughter fertility. Ticking all the important profit boxes, and available as a sexed genetic product, Bruce said ONSTAD-P’s progeny were also pleasant in the dairy. “He’s ranked 104 for temperament, the highest of any sire in the Good Bulls Guide. Given his ranking is so high, he really is one of the best all-round bulls,” he said. “Add to this a farmer likeability rating of 107, it’s no surprise his semen is in demand.”

Southwest Victorian dairy farmer Owen Simpson is milking several heifers and young cows sired by ONSTAD-P in a 640-strong herd and they are making a statement. “They are fantastic cows, they are real working cattle,” he said. “ONSTAD-P has fertility, strength, capacity and his production is very good. There are not many sires that are positive for litres and components and have a combination of all those traits.”

Holstein heaven

Australia’s top proven Holstein sire ABS JERONIMO-P has been breaking records and impressing farmers for some time now. Now he is the highest ever bull to get a full Australian proof at 525 BPI$. His rise comes off the back of incredible genomic results driven by phenomenal health traits and high production, but as more ABS JERONIMO- P’s enter Australian herds, farmers are appreciating his other benefits. “Ranked 105 for farmer likeability, now that is telling us something,” Bruce said. “He sits at 112 for daughter fertility, 107 for mastitis resistance and 111 for survival. When it comes to health traits, he really is elite.”

West Gippsland dairy farmer Megan Coster said her four ABS JERONIMO- P’s are a “pleasure to milk” and also have “very good udders”. “We have a further 14 daughters to calve next year and 30 the following year and we look forward to them coming into the herd,” she said. “They are consistent, being predominately black and the polled gene makes them not only exciting animals to milk but to also breed from.”

JERONIMO P daughter: Shannon Jeronimo 2290 GP-84 owned by Shannon Pastoral, Katunga, Victoria

The highest type sire in the top 10 Australian proven rankings is De-Su 14030 WRIGLEY ranked at number 2 Australian proven 506 BPI$. Scoring 110 for type, 107 for udders and 106 for farmer likeability, demand for the US-bred sire has gone crazy. “Since the ABV public release last week, we’ve been inundated with people wanting to use him across heifers and elite cows, thanks to his 104 calving ease,” Bruce said. “Recording a remarkable 83-point BPI rise, solely thanks to the addition of Australian daughters to his production proof, this demonstrates that he works in our conditions,” Bruce said.

Expect to see lots of Rosylane-LLC SPOCK and De-Su 13530 SEVILLE soon, as these sires have been in demand for spring joining, with most orders for the sexed Sexcel® product. At minus 10 days for gestation length, the number eight Australian proven sire SEVILLE at 396 BPI$ has been popular with farmers looking to tighten calving intervals, while also providing calving ease, according to Bruce. Number nine Australian proven SPOCK at 385 BPI$ is one of the highest semen fertility  sires in Australia. “Knowing he has been used on those cows which had been difficult to get in calf, yet he is still achieving amazing results, makes his fertility score of +3.15 (up to double of other sires) astounding,” Bruce said.

Z-Happy WINTERFELL is leading the ABS genomic Holstein offering at 506 BPI$. Used as a sire of sons in the US and released in Australia at the weekend, he’s expected to be popular with Australian breeders chasing daughter fertility and survival. Available in Sexcel®, he’s also one of the few genomic sires adding chest width into the breed.

Top class Jerseys

Australian Jersey breeders are taking the spotlight in the recent ABV genomic rankings, with number one sire Gelbeado Park WOODSIDE (CSCWOODSIDE) leading the industry. This bull entered the herd improvement system thanks to the ABS relationship with Central Sires Co-operative (CSC). Bred by Gippsland farmers Paul and Lisa Mumford and carrying a 396 BPI$, Bruce said he’s one of the few Jersey sires who can deliver strength and capacity to the breed. “ABS has put a lot of time and effort into finding elite Australian bred genomic bulls and CSCWOODSIDE is one of three new additions to our team this month,” Bruce said. “ABS Australia’s Jersey enthusiast Alan Blum has been scouring the country for us. It’s an exciting time for the Jersey breed.”

Ranleigh SKYWARD (CSCSKYWARD) is the second new Jersey addition to the ABS stable, bred by the Boyd family in Gippsland. He’s 357 BPI$ and ranked 104 for daughter fertility. Breed outcross sire Forest Glen Craze TRIPP has dominated ABS Jersey Sexcel® and conventional semen sales for the past six months and at 366 BPI$, his ABV ranking continues to rise. Another popular sire out of Western Victoria, Murray Brook JAMIEO (CSCJAMIEO) 366 BPI$, is an outstanding udder bull at 112, while delivering on health with 106 for mastitis resistance.