The list of sires which will be used for the 2022 breeding season on Newford Farm, Co Galway, has been finalised.
The number of bulls selected for use has reduced from 10 in 2021, with the two Belgian Blue sires dropping off the list for 2022.
There has also been two other changes, with new Charolais and Limousin sires replacing bulls which are no longer available or do not meet the selection criteria.
The Charolais sire Whitecliff Orwell (CH6271) replaces another Charolais sire Knockmoyle Loki (CH4159), while the Limousin sire Tomschoice Lexicon (LM 4471) replaces Laurel (LM 4185).
The sires were selected using the Irish Cattle Breeding Federation (ICBF) database and are detailed in Table 1.
Sires with higher calving difficulty figures will be used on mature cows, while easier-calving sires will be used on first- and second-calvers.
The decision on what sire to use on particular cows will also be influenced by the results of previous performance and the selection of sires to enhance or compensate for different characteristics in certain cows.
For example, sires with higher conformation figures may be used on plainer-type cows where the aim is improving the conformation in progeny.
The farm is opting to select just one sire again for use on replacement heifers, with Ewdenvale Ivor (LM 2014) used to good effect in recent years.
Teagasc's Michael Fagan also reports that three teaser bulls arrived on the farm on Monday.
The high-health status bulls have been purchased from the same farm as in recent years and cost €1,016 at an average weight of 406kg (€2.50/kg).
The Friesian bulls received a full suite of vaccinations on the farm of origin and will be isolated until breeding starts on 20 April as an added precaution.