Animal Science Department


Date of this Version

February 1989


Published in J. Anim. Sci. 1989. 67:2515-2528. Copyright © 1989 American Society of Animal Science. Used by permission.


Phenotypic variances for linear and transformed weight traits were partitioned into residual, direct genetic (D) and maternal genetic (M) components using REML techniques with American Simmental Association data from calves born 1969 to 1985. Variance components were estimated separately from subclasses defined by sex (male, female) and percent Simmental (50, >75). The model included fixed effects of contemporary group and age-of-dam (<3, 3 to 5, >5 yr). Additive relationships among sires and maternal grandsires were included. Results follow for a sire-maternal grandsire model for ≥ 75% Simmental untransformed data based on 143,280 male and 281,805 female weaning weights (WW) representing 4,763 and 7,406 sires, respectively. Female results are bracketed. For computational simplification, 47,650 [30,909] postweaning gain (PVO records were included in the analysis only for 114,404 [182,255] calves with birth weight (BW). Phenotypic standard deviations (kg) were: BW, 4.5 [4.1]; WW, 26.9 [23.2]; and PW, 25.9 [19.9]. Heritabilities were: BWD, .40 [.45]; WWD, .32 [.39]; PWD, .26 [.32]; BWM, .13 [.15]; WWM, .20 [.16]; and PWM, .01 [.01]. These heritabilities are higher than previously used for genetic evaluations in this breed. Moderate and positive correlations .26 to .50, existed between direct effects and were similar for both sexes. Direct and maternal effects on the same trait were correlated negatively: BW, -.45 [-.31]; and WW, -.27 [-.34]. Genetic correlation between BWM and WWM was .53 [.49]. First-cross progeny exhibited less genetic and residual variation and had lower heritabilities than Simmental calves of higher percent. Correlations between sire evaluations on the subsets were consistent with those expected given a perfect genetic correlation between gaits for each sex and percent Simmental. Logarithmic transformed records were no more homogeneous than untransformed records.