Estimation of Genetic Parameters and Breeding Values for Body weight and Linear Body Measurements of Mixed Flock of Cattle Breeds

Ifeanyichukwu Udeh


The aim of this study was to estimate the genetic parameters and breeding values for body weight and linear body measurements namely body length, heart girth, height at withers, hip height and tail length of cattle. The number of animals used for the study was 176 and fixed factors such as breed, sex and age contemporary group were included in the mixed model equations. Estimation of genetic parameters was performed using restricted maximum likelihood (REML) procedure in univariate and multivariate animal models. Estimates of heritability (h2) for body weight, body length, heart girth, height at withers, hip height and tail length was 0.31±0.11, 0.26±0.10, 0.54±0.11, 0.19±0.08, 0.22±0.09 and 0.02±0.12 respectively. The genetic correlations among body weight and linear body measurements ranged from -0.99 to 0.99. The mean estimated breeding value (EBV) for body weight, body length, heart girth, height at withers, hip height and tail length was 2.31kg, 0.23cm, 1.36cm, 0.66cm, 0.57cm and 0.03cm respectively. The low to high heritability estimates for body weight and linear body measurements implies rapid improvement of these traits via mass selection. High EBV for each trait implies high transmitting ability


Cattle, fixed factors, genetic correlations, heritability, REML

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