Productive longevity of first-cross cows produced in a five-breed diallel: I. Reasons for removal. Academic Article uri icon


  • Data from 498 cows of 15 breed-types produced in a five-breed diallel (reciprocals pooled) including Angus, Brahman, Hereford, Holstein and Jersey were analyzed for differences in productive longevity, mean life span and reasons for removal from the herd over approximately 14 yr. The only culling related to production was of cows that did not give birth to at least one live calf every 24 mo. Otherwise, cows were only removed when they appeared to be incapable of weaning another live calf. The average age at removal, estimated from linear regression, was 3,470 d, with values ranging from 2,174 d (Jersey) to 4,087 d (Angus-Brahman). Longevity of crossbred cows was greater than that of purebred cows (P less than .001). Purebred cows usually had higher initial rates of removal than crossbred cows. Estimates of mean longevity from the nonlinear regression resembled the results of the linear regression analysis; mean life spans ranged from 6.2 yr (Jersey) to 14.6 yr (Angus-Brahman). The major reason for removal of Brahman and Brahman-cross cows was for reproductive reasons. Angus and Angus-cross cows were culled more frequently for structural unsoundness; Hereford cows had a higher incidence of cancer eye, calving difficulty and mammary problems; cows with 100% dairy breeding had exceptionally high susceptibility to diseases and mineral imbalance.

published proceedings

  • J Anim Sci

author list (cited authors)

  • Rohrer, G. A., Baker, J. F., Long, C. R., & Cartwright, T. C

citation count

  • 19

complete list of authors

  • Rohrer, GA||Baker, JF||Long, CR||Cartwright, TC

publication date

  • November 1988