Cows that can take hot climates
Bull semen that produces dairy cows capable of performing in tropical countries has been released by Waikato company Dairy Solutionz.
The three bulls from the new Kiwipole breed - Slick Pathos, Slick Eros and his brother Slick Himeros - are believed to be the world’s first homozygous ‘‘slick’’ dairy type bulls available for export semen sales.
The bulls will transmit the heat tolerance associated with the ‘‘slick gene’’ to all of their daughters. This gene allows cattle to perform in hot and humid conditions, with maintained and even improved milk production.
Slick genes will better regulate body temperature while maintaining milk yield under heat stress.
Dairy Solutionz recently launched the breed at the Tulare World Ag Expo event in California, in partnership with Stgenetics.
Dairy Solutionz chief executive Derek Fairweather said the launch was a chance to showcase the genetics to farmers who run North America’s large scale mega-dairies.
‘‘It’s not a solution for the whole of America, there’s niche climates and conditions where it’s got a role but it’s a pretty compelling value proposition and the science is in behind it.’’
Heat stress was a significant issue in the United States among cattle, he said.
‘‘You’re either incurring a lot of costs to moderate the environment and it gets over 100 degrees fahrenheit (37degc) pretty frequently and that’s pretty hot.’’
He also met with farmers from Nigeria, Ethiopia and Mexico who were interested in the genetics. ian and Pakistan markets. Philippines supplier Dave Hayman has exported New Zealand dairy cows to the Philippines and has used the Kiwipole bull semen, with calving taking place soon.
‘‘In the Philippines, it’s a tough climate for dairy production, and these genetics will make the progeny of the New Zealand live heifers that we imported, more robust and productive.’’
Dairy Solutionz will be looking to market their heat tolerant dairy genetics in tropical countries as well as New Zealand.