The basic theory of Breedplan performance recording is that it compares the performance of animals to other animals in the same group. Therefore, data taken from just one animal cannot be compared to anything and so its performance cannot be used.

The recorded and reported traits are important to bull breeders and commercial producers and include weights, reproduction and carcase.

A contemporary group must have a minimum of two animals that meet the following criteria in order to be used in the Breedplan analysis:

  • Same herd
  • Same calving year
  • Same management group
  • Same weigh date
  • Born within 90 days (starting period triggered by first calf born, e.g. calf born 1 January triggers the 90 day period to end of March, calf born 15 April commences next 90 day period to the middle of July
  • Not be a mixture of natural and ET calves
  • Not be a mixture of twins and singles

Although the Breedplan system allows calves born within 90 days of one another to be compared, the closer their age, the better and between between six to eight weeks is ideal.

Where practical, all calves should be managed under the same conditions and weighed on the same day. If calves are to be split into different groups, it is beneficial to weigh the whole group before it is split.

It is possible to take 200 day weights anywhere between 80 and 300 days of age, so male calves can be weighed as a group before a portion of them are castrated.

Breedplan requires progeny in an analysis group to be by at least two sires if the performance of the progeny is going to contribute to the calculations of EBVs for their sire, to provide a comparison. When one or more is an AI sire, your mating programme should ensure calves by AI are born at the same time as calves sired naturally.

Completeness of performance

‘Completeness of performance’ assesses the quantity of pedigree and performance information submitted to Breedplan by an individual herd.

Star rating

Herds with a star rating of 5 are considered to be gold standard and are recording ‘complete’ performance information for all traits for which EBVs are available.