Short communication: Jersey × Holstein crossbreds compared with pure Holsteins for body weight, body condition score, fertility, and survival during the first three lactations

Bradley J Heins, Leslie B Hansen, A. R. Hazel, Anthony J Seykora, D. G. Johnson, J. G. Linn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

Crossbred cows (n = 80) resulting from the use of Jersey (JE) semen on their pure Holstein (HO) dams were compared with pure HO cows (n = 77) for body weight, body condition score, fertility, and survival during their first 3 lactations. Cows were in 2 research herds of the University of Minnesota and calved from September 2003 to June 2008. The JE × HO crossbred cows had significantly less body weight during the first (-56. kg), second (-67. kg), and third (-82. kg) lactations than pure HO cows. However, JE × HO cows had significantly greater body condition score during the first (2.94 vs. 2.84), second (2.97 vs. 2.84), and third (2.99 vs. 2.87) lactations than pure HO cows. For fertility, JE × HO cows had fewer days to first breeding during the first (-10.6. d), second (-8.4. d), and third (-12.3. d) lactations than pure HO cows. Crossbred cows were not significantly different from pure HO cows for number of services during first lactation; however, JE × HO cows had significantly fewer services (2.2) than pure HO cows (2.7) during the second lactation. Also, JE × HO cows had significantly fewer days open than pure HO cows in the first (-24. d), second (-42. d), and third (-42. d) lactations. For survival, JE × HO cows were not significantly different from pure HO cows for percentage of cows calving a second time; however, a tendency existed for a higher percentage of JE × HO cows (63.8%) than pure HO cows (49.4%) to calve a third time, and a higher percentage of JE × HO cows calved a third time within 28, 34, and 40. mo of first calving than pure HO cows.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4130-4135
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Volume95
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2012

Keywords

  • Body condition
  • Crossbreeding
  • Fertility
  • Jersey

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