There is no single attribute which can answer this – rather it’s a collective of factors.

Michele van der Aa, LIC sire analyst

In saying this, I’d argue that one of the most essential attributes the dam must possess is depth in the pedigree. That is exactly what we’re seeing from the maternal lines of the sires profiled on these pages.

These dams are each the result of a contract themselves, coming from families with a proven history of producing both sires and daughters which have played pivotal roles within the contract mating process, and, in turn, have positively impacted the New Zealand dairy population.

This season there are eight Holstein-Friesian graduates for the 2020-cohort, entering various Premier Sires teams, and I’m considerably excited by the lineup showcased here.

120073 Meander TS Alloy-ET S1F

Taking out the top spot at 565 genomic breeding worth (gBW) is none other than Alloy. Sired by Supervisor, Alloy’s strengths include his production, boasting 130kg of combined fat and protein through modest volume of 835 litres and 68kg of liveweight. Nestled in good company, Alloy hails from the illustrious dam that is Meander FMI April S2F.

Meander FMI April S2F, dam to Alloy
Meander FMI April S2F, dam to Alloy

Meander has a long history of providing LIC with impressive sons, having graduated nine to date including Arrow, Azure, Asset and Wingman.

Classified at 87, this superstar has a plethora of daughters we continue to utilise within the contract mating space. A daughter of worthy note is Meander HH April-ET S2F.

This Hothouse dam has two full sons graduating as part of the 2020 cohort, 120070 Meander TD Aero-ET S1F and 120071 Meander TD Astute-ET S1F. These Darkstar sons are the complete package, each boasting solid production including positive fertility, A2A2 status, and udder genomic breeding values (gBVs) of 0.59 and 0.57 respectively.

Credit must be given to Robert and Annemarie Bruin for their continuous and remarkable contribution to the Holstein Friesian breed and industry.

120045 Woodcote VHR Lucid-ET S1F

The inclusion of Lucid in a Premier Sires team is an absolute no-brainer.

120045 Woodcote VHR Lucid-ET S1
120045 Woodcote VHR Lucid-ET S1

Excelling across many areas, Lucid graduates with the highest solids of all Friesian graduates named in a team at 140 kg combined fat and protein via a moderate 60 kg liveweight gBV.

Ensuring that Lucid daughters will survive for many lactations, this production is supported by an udder gBV of 0.93. With a focus on udders, the Livestock Selection team stepped back and used Remedy as an older sire of sons, and this is clearly paying dividends.

Andy and Angela Fullerton should feel extremely proud of what they’ve delivered here – on behalf of all Holstein-Friesian commercial dairy farmers, thank you!

120003 Scotts BV Darius-ET

Having climbed 169 gBW points since the September Animal Evaluation run to 425 gBW, Darius is a bull that continues to excite LIC’s sire selection team.

120003 Scotts BV Darius-ET
120003 Scotts BV Darius-ET

The result of LIC’s investment in embryo transfer work, Dairus is a sire who brings plenty to the table including 110kg of combined fat and protein, positive fertility, and exceptional farmer traits – as well as 0.75 gBV for dairy conformation.

A Vector son, out of a Freedom dam, Darius is born into the same cow family as LIC Hall of Fame bull, 101140 Macfarlanes Dauntless, showcasing the strength within both this family and Darius as a sire.

While no longer actively farming, it is delightful to see the fruits of Mark and Patricia Scott’s labour still being celebrated today; congratulations on another brilliant contribution!

A full list of the 2023 Friesian graduates named in Premier Sires teams

HF GRads 23