Docility Improvement and Docility Index
The improvement of the temperament within the Limousin breed is considered a key breed priority. Several studies on the purchasers of beef bulls has highlighted that docility is a stigma within the breed and one of the main reasons why they would not buy a Limousin bull.
With this in mind, Irish Limousin breeders, under the instruction of the Irish Limousin Cattle Society, began to record docility in their animals in the early 90’s and have been doing so since then. What has evolved is a highly accurate docility index, which is available for all animals, and Irish Limousin is the only country to produce such information in Europe. The genetic trend for docility of Irish Limousin Cattle has increased by a massive 15 points since recording began, proving that the breed is now quieter than ever. Docility information of all animals in the Irish Limousin herdbook is available on our Live herdbook.
High Level of AI Usage
Due to the relatively small average herd sizes in Ireland it is less feasible to run a stock bull with the pedigree herd. Therefore there is mass use of AI in the pedigree Limousin population. Approximately 70% of all pedigree Limousin calves born each year are sired by high genetic merit AI sires with high reliability. The high usage of AI within the population has facilitated rapid genetic improvement of the breed.
Irish Limousin – Unique Crossroads of Genetics
They say that success breeds success - Well this is also the case for Irish Limousin. The development of the breed in its homeland in France and also in near neighbours in UK, has been exceptional. The policy of the Irish Limousin Cattle Society and its breeders has always been to select and import the best and most successful bloodlines from both countries. Breeding the best to the best has now branded Irish Limousin in a source of some of the best genetics in Europe. Popular Irish bred AI sires now include Milbrook Tanko, and Pelletstown Newman.
INTERBEEF & International Indexes
If we say that we have some of the best genetics, then we want to prove it. The Irish Limousin Cattle Society, in conjunction with the Irish Cattle Breeding Federation is strongly involved in the pan-Europe INTERBEEF program which incorporates animal performance data from a number of countries into one genetic index. As yet only in its infancy, this index will be available in the near future.
Data Collection in Ireland
The establishment of the Irish Cattle Breeding Federation over 10 years ago led to a revolution in data collection and analysis for genetic indexes. Key to this revolution is that all data now resides in one central database. The suppliers of the data are many:
- Department of Agriculture & Herdbooks
1. Calving registration details
2. Animal movement data and lifespan data
3. Linear scoring data & weight recording
- Tully Performance Test Station
1. Linear scoring data and food conversion efficiency
- AI companies
1. Insemination data
1. Carcass data
- Commercial Marts/Auctions
1. Sale data & weights
From an animal’s conception in the womb to its death, its performance information is systematically and automatically recorded to yield vital data for a number of important traits:
- Calving Ease
- Maternal Milk
- Gestation Length
- Maternal Calving Ease & Gestation
- Calf Mortality
- Lifespan & Survivability
- Weaning Weight
- Cull Cow Weight
- Calf Quality at Weaning
- Age at 1st Calving
- Carcass Weight Docility
- Conformation Muscle
- Carcass Fat
- Feed Efficiency
The suppliers of such data are many, but all with one intention – to contribute to one of the most advanced genetic evaluation systems in the world. Check out our Live herdbook which shows details of the traits for all Irish Limousin animals.
Free Transport to Northern Ireland & UK
To minimise the logistics and administration involved in the movement of animals abroad, the Irish Limousin Cattle Society have introduced a foreign buyer scheme whereby ILCS will organise and pay for the transportation of animals to Northern Ireland and mainland UK if purchased from one of the 3 Premier sales in Roscrea mart. All animals sold at these sales are export tested and ready for immediate transport abroad.