17.04.2018
NTM Unlocked - Comparing breeding values between breeds 
In this post, we will talk about why you should not compare breeding values (EBVs) for the different traits in NTM between the three breeds. 
17.04.2018
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06.03.2018
NTM Unlocked – Trust in Genomic Selection
We place great trust in genomic breeding values in NTM. The genetic progress is much faster today, and currently close to 100% of services in our home countries are made with semen from young bulls with genomic breeding values. Genomic testing on females is increasing and is boosting the profitability on herd level for dairy farmers. Our farmers believe in genomic breeding values and that it will benefit the dairy business development.
06.03.2018
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26.02.2018
NTM Unlocked - Rolling base vs. fixed base evaluations 
In this post, we are going to talk about the base population of cows that is used for estimating the breeding values in the Nordic system in comparison with the one used in the United States. 
26.02.2018
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19.02.2018
NTM Unlocked - Functional conformation
In our previous post we talked about conformation in general, but in this one we will talk about the optimal conformation for commercial dairy herds in comparison to optimal conformation for show cows. It should be always kept in mind that the economic optimum for a good production dairy cow can be very different from a cow that is bred for show purposes.  
19.02.2018
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12.02.2018
NTM Unlocked - Conformation traits 
The conformation traits have a weight of 13-15% in NTM depending on the breed. There are 22 conformation sub-traits, combined into Frame, Feet & legs and Udder. 
12.02.2018
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06.02.2018
NTM Unlocked - Milkability & Temperament 
In this post we are talking more about the workability traits in NTM: milkability and temperament. These traits measure how easy it is to milk the cows and how they are to handle. 
06.02.2018
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24.01.2018
NTM Unlocked - Calving direct & Calving maternal
The calving indexes are important for the dairy business because a difficult calving will affect the milk production of a cow for a very long time. And also, even if you get your heifers and cows pregnant but they can’t deliver live-born calves in the end of term, you lose the value of the calf too. 
24.01.2018
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16.01.2018
NTM Unlocked - Longevity
In this post, we are unlocking the Longevity index. Longevity is a very important trait for sustainable and profitable dairy business. With cows that last long in the herd and maintain good production levels, the farmer can trust his business. 
16.01.2018
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08.01.2018
NTM Unlocked - Fertility 
Dairy cow’s fertility and health is a sophisticated system where everything is interconnected. To improve fertility in your herd, breeding only for better daughter fertility is just a piece of the whole puzzle. To improve the fertility performance, it is necessary to consider other correlated health traits as well. 
08.01.2018
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18.12.2017
NTM unlocked - Youngstock Survival index part 2
How much improvement in Youngstock survival can you expect from a bull with high breeding values for YSS?
18.12.2017
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11.12.2017
NTM unlocked - Youngstock Survival index part 1
In this and our next post, we are going to talk about Youngstock survival index in NTM. Youngstock survival index (YSS) is the newest trait in NTM and was added to NTM in 2016. Youngstock survival index describes the genetic ability of the bulls’ offspring to survive from birth to maturity. Bulls with high indices for YSS breed offspring with good survival in the rearing period. 
11.12.2017
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04.12.2017
NTM Unlocked - General Health index part 2
How much improvement in health can you expect from a bull with high breeding values for General Health sub-indices?
04.12.2017
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27.11.2017
NTM Unlocked - General Health index part 1
General Health is a very important trait, both for dairy cows’ well-being and comfort but also of economic reasons. With more than 80 different disease diagnoses covered by the General Health index, it is a very important addition to the Udder Health and Hoof Health traits in NTM. By relying on health traits in NTM, you really get a full declaration on cows’ health. 
27.11.2017
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20.11.2017
NTM Unlocked - Hoof Health index part 2
How much improvement in hoof disorders can you expect from a bull with high breeding values for Hoof Health sub-indices? For example, VikingHolstein EBV 120 for Sole ulcer means 57% less cases of sole ulcer relative to population average. There really is a difference between bulls! 
20.11.2017
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14.11.2017
NTM Unlocked - Hoof Health index
The Hoof Health index is strongly correlated with NTM, for VikingHolstein that number is 35%.  It also has a strong correlation with Longevity (38%), General Health (25%) and Daughter Fertility (23%). The Hoof Health index is a very important trait, both for dairy cows’ well-being and comfort but also for economic reasons. Lameness is among the top culling reasons in dairy cows.
14.11.2017
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06.11.2017
NTM Unlocked - Udder Health index
The Udder Health index describes the bull’s daughters’ genetic ability to resist mastitis and it includes breeding values for udder health in the first three lactations. The Data behind the Udder Health index is the records on clinical mastitis made by veterinarians. What makes the Udder Health index unique is that in the Nordic countries, we register actual disease cases and don’t just rely on indicator traits, like Somatic cell count (SCC). 
06.11.2017
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02.11.2017
NTM Unlocked - Production index
Production for a dairy cow is one of the most important traits, if not the most important. Without the capability to produce a sufficient amount of milk, the cow is not supporting a sustainable and profitable dairy business. The production index describes the bull’s daughters’ genetic potential for milk, fat and protein production.
02.11.2017
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23.10.2017
NTM Unlocked - Longevity correlations
Dairy cow’s health and well-being is a sophisticated system where everything is interconnected. As an example, hoof health influences the longevity of the animal. Our breeding goal is a long-lasting cow that is healthy, trouble-free with high lifetime production. This means lower costs, less work, better profit and a better life for dairy farmers and the cows.  
23.10.2017
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17.10.2017
NTM Unlocked – Correlation explained 
What is a correlation? Why is it important to talk about correlations in breeding? 
Correlation is a measure for how things are related. When the connection between two things is close, we talk about a high correlation. On the contrary, when the connection is not clear, we talk about a low correlation or no correlation at all in some cases. 
17.10.2017
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13.10.2017
NTM Unlocked – Different weights for different breeds
Why do we have different weights for different breeds? Bovine breeds are different from each other and therefore the weight distribution in the breeding goals for VikingHolstein, VikingRed and VikingJersey are a bit different. We want all the breeds to develop towards the optimal balanced breeding outcome while taking into consideration the genetic differences and the natural breed specific tendencies for certain traits. The weights for the different breeds are shown in the image. 
13.10.2017
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17.09.2017
NTM Unlocked - The NTM range explained
NTM and breeding values for different traits is not just numbers but an important tool to compare the bulls. These numbers reveal what genetic potential is actually hidden in a bull. By looking at NTM and the estimated breeding values (EBV) for a specific bull, you could know what to expect from his daughters. The numbers will tell you all about their performance in your herd.
17.09.2017
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16.09.2017
NTM Unlocked - How to read NTM values?
It is actually not so difficult to understand NTM and the proofs in our system. Estimated breeding values (EBVs) for 14 different traits in NTM are shown in such a way that animals in the base population for the breed have an average index of 100. For NTM, our total merit index, the average is equal to 0.
16.09.2017
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15.09.2017
NTM Unlocked - What is NTM? 
We are always talking about NTM, Nordic Total Merit –index. But what is NTM? What does it mean? What makes NTM one of the most progressive breeding value systems in the world? If these are questions you have been raising, you will get the answers as we are breaking down NTM and unlocking the figures for you.
15.09.2017
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