EBLEX Beef R & D

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EBLEX Beef R&D
Mary Vickers
Priority areas 2013
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Genetic improvement of beef and sheep
Health and welfare
Beef & sheep nutrition
Climate change mitigation and adaptation
Sustainable production systems
Meat quality and safety
Priority areas 2014-17
• TBC……
• Animal genetics
• Beef cattle nutrition
Sourcing proposals
• Tenders
• Calls
• Unsolicited
Current research
•
•
•
•
•
•
Improving liver fluke control in cattle
Nutri-beef
Nutritional effects on heifer productivity
Carcase traits evaluation
Lifetime growth pattern and beef eating quality
Straw bed corrals
Current research
• Predicting oestrus and calving
• Foetal programming literature review
• Bioethanol co-products for livestock feed
o RB209 validation
o Farmax
o Farm scale resource calculator
Improving liver fluke control
in cattle
• Herd level diagnostic tests, to identify farms with fluke
infection and to discriminate between Fasciola and
paramphistome infection
• Field level classification of snail habitats and
identification of factors that influence contacts
between cows, snails and the parasite.
Liver fluke control cont….
• Identification of on farm risk factors for F. hepatica
infection and development of models to predict
benefits of implementing changes on farm
• An economic analysis to define costs of fluke
infection at herd and national level
• Evaluation of on-farm intervention programme on
reducing prevalence of fluke infection on dairy and
beef farms.
Nutribeef
• 2 x feed additives, 2 x breeds, 2 x basal rations
• effect on interaction with methane emissions, performance and
efficiency in different breeds of beef cattle.
• changes in rumen function by characterising the rumen
microbial population differences and by repeated rumen
sampling to determine the long-term effects.
• carcass, meat quality and shelf life effects
• nutritional and economic modelling to identify the best
nutritional strategy
Nutritional effects on heifer
productivity
• effect of nutrient intake during early-gestation on
occurrence of dystocia in beef heifers calving at 2 years;
• potential of maternal hormones as indicators of foetal wellbeing and of dietary supplementation requirements.
• milk intake of the calf and growth rates to 1 yr
• effects upon calving to conception interval, reproductive
organ development and development of following
offspring.
Carcase traits evaluation
• Phase I = Feasibility of using abattoir data and BCMS
records for Carcase Trait Evaluations (EBLEX,
DairyCo, HCC) 2012
• Phase II =
a) Calculate genetic parameters and EBVs for carcass
weight, fat and conformation scores
b) The inclusion of full pedigree information from all
relevant UK breeds and (if feasible) developing
across breed genetic evaluations
Lifetime growth pattern and
beef eating quality
Growth path
Age at
slaughter
(months)
Short
12-16
Medium
18-26
Long
28-36
Limx steers and heifers
Gristle sheath
Straw bed corrals
Recently completed
• Woodchip pads
• Maize silage NIRS
• Heifer synchronization
• IBERS forage breeding,  WUE, NUE and PUE
• HAUC – Crimped maize, oats, soya hulls,
Thanks for listening
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