AS from January 2018 the Dairy Shorthorn Society’s Coates herd book will be closed to animals other than those by a registered Dairy Shorthorn sire from either the UK or elsewhere in the world. As a result, the society’s semen company Red Cattle Genetics will be rebranded as Shorthorn Sires UK (SSUK).
SSUK will continue to be a management tool for breeders where a selection committee, chaired by Seimon Thomas, of the Drisgol herd, identifys the optimal sires to use. The aim is to provide profitability through balanced genetics of production, type and merit.
By closing the breed to outside bloodlines the society is trying to maintain the breed’s fertility, locomotion and longevity, fundamental traits which set the breed apart from other breeds. Genomic evaluations are now in the pipeline for Dairy Shorthorns which will further enhance the evaluations of bulls.
Edward Crank, the breed society chairman, says: “We see this as a very positive step. Up until now we have accepted animals with other red breed bloodlines but feel there is now sufficient outside blood within the breed. We see it as time to focus on the breed’s core attributes.
Our semen company offers genetics from some of the top bulls on the recent proof run and they are in increasing demand from both pedigree and commercial breeders.”