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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Heterosis for survival and dentition in Hereford, Angus, Shorthorn, and crossbred cows.

Records of 328 Angus, Hereford, Shorthorn, and first-cross cows produced from 1960 to 1963 were used to estimate heterosis (h) and individual (gI) and maternal (gM) average breed effects on cumulative survival (CS) by ages to 12 yr, longevity (L), and size ( SI) and condition of incisors at 10 to 15 yr of age. Reasons for cow disposal were also studied. The 155 cows born in 1960 and 1961 first calved at 3 yr of age, and the 173 born in 1962 and 1963 first calved at 2 yr of age. Analyses for CS and L were done for both actual culling of cows open in two consecutive years (AC) and imposed culling of any open cow (IC). The model for CS and L included cow birth year-breed of cow's sire (Y-S), sires within Y-S, breed of dam (D), and D x Y-S. For SI, the model included breed of cow, year of recording, and quadratic effect of age. Linear contrasts were used to estimate h, gI, and gM for quantitative variables, and chi-square was used for discrete variables. Under both AC (P less than .05) and IC, crossbreds exceeded straightbreds in CS to 12 yr (16.7 and 8.5%) and L (1.36 and .99 yr). Estimates of gI and gM for CS and L were generally small, except for the low (P less than .05) gM of Shorthorn cows under IC. Mortality and culling for emaciation, cancer eye, or prolapse was less for crossbreds than for straightbreds and increased with age. Crossbreds had longer (P less than .01) and better (P less than .001) teeth than straightbreds. The longer productive life of crossbred cows reduces rearing costs for replacements and increases sales of calves and cull cows.[1]


  1. Heterosis for survival and dentition in Hereford, Angus, Shorthorn, and crossbred cows. Núñez-Dominguez, R., Cundiff, L.V., Dickerson, G.E., Gregory, K.E., Koch, R.M. J. Anim. Sci. (1991) [Pubmed]
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