The PhD presentation on Wednesday 25th January, during dairy day, will be presented by Fern Pearston, looking at lameness evaluations for the UK dairy industry.
Lameness has been recorded by Milk Recording Organisations (MRO) in the UK for a number of years, either as a feet problem event or lameness event. A pilot study carried out by a PhD student on placement with AHDB Dairy in 2016 using data from one UK MRO found a heritability of 8% for lameness when fitting a sire repeatability model.
Following this pilot, AHDB Dairy have continued the analysis using all available MRO data. Genetic evaluations using this data fitting an animal model are now being implemented. . Preliminary Predicted Transmitting Abilities (PTA) for 21,997 bulls were produced ranging from -23% to 34% lameness incidence. A multivariate analysis correlating lameness with conformation traits recorded as part of the national herdbook classification scheme is also being conducted.