Friday, March 31, 2017

PregCheck™ Rankings-The A.I. Industry’s Only Data-Driven Sire Fertility Rankings

PregCheck™ rankings are an evaluation of an individual sire’s frozen semen conception rate. The model and data collection process is a first of its kind in the beef industry.

What is the validity of PregCheck™ rankings as a selection tool?
The statistical analysis is calculated by CRI’s International Center for Biotechnology (ICB) researchers. These researchers assisted GENEX in being the first to the marketplace with a dairy sire fertility evaluation which has led to industry-wide fertility domination for the past decade. The beef fertility model is identical to what is used to evaluate fertility in dairy sires, except it is set to a beef base. This means all beef sires in the database are compared to other beef sires, not dairy sires.

What does the PregCheck™ ranking number mean?
Using 100 as the base, the fertility rankings are calculated as an index and designed to predict an individual sire’s frozen semen conception rate. For example, Bull A has a 104 PregCheck™ with 93% reliability versus Bull B with a 99 PregCheck™ and 75% reliability. At 93% reliable, Bull A can be used with confidence; he will perform 4% above the average of his contemporaries for conception rate, and is likely 5% higher than Bull B for conception rate. At only 75% reliable, there is still some uncertainty as to how Bull B will actually perform over time until he is bred to more females. However, at this point Bull B is trending below the average of his contemporaries.

Where does the data come from and is it reliable?
PregCheck™ rankings are the result of real breedings which have shown differences between sires. Each bull’s ranking comes with an associated reliability value. As the
reliability value increases, the amount of change in the ranking will decrease when additional pregnancy data is included in future analyses. For a reliable evaluation, which is about 70%, a sire must have approximately 400 breedings in the database.

What is the advantage to GENEX members and customers who use PregCheck™ fertility rankings as a sire selection tool?

GENEX feels the true advantage is the ability to eliminate inferior fertility sires from a breeding program. GENEX members and customers can expect increased conception rates resulting in more A.I. pregnancies and pounds of calf per year, as demonstrated below.

Where can PregCheck™ rankings be found?
GENEX is proud to be the first A.I. organization to quantify individual beef sire fertility. Members and customers can find rankings on the GENEX website and published in the
Beef Genetic Management Guide. While all GENEX sires are procured with producer
profitability in mind, PregCheck™ fertility rankings offer members and customers another selection option to improve bottom lines.

Do you want to learn more about our PregCheck™ fertility rankings? Contact your local GENEX representative or leave a comment below. Also, check out our previous blog, written by Patsy Houghton, about how they use PregCheck™ fertility rankings at Heartland Cattle Company. 

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