Using genomics to fine-tune your herd to its environment

Using genomics to fine-tune your herd to its environment

John Paterson

Progressive Cattleman

While we may be a long way from designer cows bred for unique production conditions, today’s DNA screening tools help producers select heifers well suited to different grazing environments. For example, cows from where I grew up in the desert of New Mexico range from 900 to 1,200 pounds. But where I live now, in the higher-rainfall, cool-season grasslands of Montana, the environment can support an optimum size that ranges between 1,400 and 1,800 pounds.

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