Captain maintains lead while new graduates join proven sires

Genosource Captain is the number one daughter-proven sire (Photo: AHDB)
Genosource Captain is the number one daughter-proven sire (Photo: AHDB)

A continued strong lead by the Holstein sire, Genosource Captain, plus two new graduates in the top 10 are features of the daughter-proven Profitable Lifetime Index (£PLI) ranking.

Captain’s PLI climbs to £874, despite the impact of the rolling base change which takes place each April, AHDB confirms in its new rankings.

He continues to excel in Predicted Transmitting Abilities (PTAs) for production, including 1187kg milk, 49.5kg fat and 37.6kg protein.

Combining this with outstanding Feed Advantage (289), he earns his stripes from close to 500 daughters milking in the UK and many more internationally. Captain’s Type Merit of 1.85 also ranks him high on the conformation lists.

Climbing a place to second is Westcoast River (PLI £778), with 329 UK milking daughters. River has one of the best HealthyCow ratings at £286, thanks to outstanding udder health (-32 SCC) and higher daughter fertility (Fertility Index 10).

Ranking even higher for daughter fertility is third placed Aardema Pistolero, with a 12.3 FI. He too scores well for HealthyCow at £275 and has a PLI of £722. Both River and Pistolero are sons of Westcoast Guarantee, a former number one £PLI sire himself.

The highest-ranking new graduate moves into fourth position in the form of Peak AltaZazzle son, Winstar Greycup. His PLI of £717 reflects a well-balanced profile, including high fat PTAs, at 40.4kg and +0.19%.

Fifth to seventh places are occupied by three De-Su 14222 Kenobi sons, the first being FB Kenobi Targaryen, with a PLI of £710 and excellent protein transmission (36.2kg).

Next comes Denovo 15567 Kimmel (PLI £706), who makes strong gains as he adds UK daughters and offers a high milk PTA at 969kg. And the third Kenobi son is Bomaz Kettle who transmits high milk solids and has PLI of £703.

Peak Mauney climbs to eighth position (PLI £701), with exceptional daughter Fertility Index (14.3), a high HealthyCow (£273) and favourable transmission of digital dermatitis resistance.

However, the best Fertility Index, at 14.4, is for ninth placed Progenesis Wimbledon, who also excels for milk quality, at +0.33% fat and +0.24% protein.

He shares this position with the final new graduate in the top 10, Badger SSI Big Al Newman, both earning a PLI of £695. Newman has the best Lifespan Index of the top bulls (+198 days), and also the best HealthyCow at £298.

Marco Winters, head of animal genetics for AHDB said: “The leading proven sires demonstrate a superb balance of traits including those which will confer health, efficiency and high production on to their daughters.

“This is so important in an economic and political climate which demands a low carbon footprint and high standards of animal welfare alongside profitability, all of which are being demonstrated through the performance of actual daughters of these sires.

“The fact that these gains can be made through breeding is not to be overlooked, as this is the cheapest and most permanent and long-term method of making progress."