APLDA has been identified as End Implementing Agency (EIA) for implementing the Sub Project Plan on “Production of High Genetic Merit Crossbred Jersey bulls through Progeny Testing” under National Dairy Plan-I during the years 2013-14 to 2017-18. A total amount of Rs.1792.29 Lakhs has been allocated for the project period of five years to produce 160 Crossbred Jersey Bulls.

The main objective of progeny testing programme is “Prodution of High Genetic Merit bulls” which in turn used to enhance the milk production.

Productivity of dairy animals is influenced by their genotype. Hence, the productivity will be enhanced by increasing genetic potential.

The selection of male always assumes greater significance in any genetic improvement programme as their contribution to the next generation is significantly higher than females.

A bovine female can produce only one progeny in a year, where as a bovine male can breed around 100-150 females during the same period by Natural service and semen from a single bull can be used to breed thousands of females in a year by Artificial Insemination. Therefore the importance of accurately selecting male becomes more critical.

Absence of systematic selection of males for artificial insemination is the main reason for the low productivity of dairy animals in the country.

Hence, Progeny Testing Programme is implementing to achieve a study genetic progress in the buffalo or cattle population for milk, fat and protein yield and breed characters.

Progeny Testing programme will be taken up in a compact area, where a sizable number of breedable animals of the identified breed are available and a reasonable size of AI infrastructure exists and also aptitude and awareness of the farmers and AI technicians are also taken into consideration.

In PTP, bulls are being tested in batches. A minimum of 2000 test doses per bull shall be distributed in identified villages so as to conduct a minimum of 2000 AI and 3000 doses for each bull are preserved till progeny test results of the bulls put to test are available. All the female animals inseminated with test dose of semen are identified with ear tags.

All daughters born shall be identified with ear tags and followed up for body growth. Parentage testing (DNA test) shall be carried out in 10% of the daughters randomly. When these daughters reach serviceable age they are inseminated with Semen from test bulls of future batches and later followed up for pregnancy and calving. All data related to AI, pregnancy, calving are captured online in a software called INAPH (Information Network for Animal Productivity and Health).

Milk production as well as milk components like fat, milk proteins, lactose etc., of all the daughters would be analyzed and recorded through INAPH once in a month for complete lactation.

Breeding values of bulls put to test and milk recorded daughters would be estimated. Semen doses of top ranked bulls (minimum five) shall be used for nominated mating of elite daughters to produce next generation of superior bull calves.

Bull Calves produced through nominated mating shall be procured after preliminary selection, disease screening and parentage testing. Procured bull calves will be kept at pre-quarantine and quarantine stations and later distributed to semen station for producing thousands of doses of quality semen during its lifetime.

All the animals in all the villages of PTP mandals will be vaccinated against HS, BQ, FMD and Brucellosis to ensure that the male calves produced in PTP are disease free.

To increase awareness among farmers awareness camps and calf rallies are being conducted in PTP implementing villages.

Benefits of Progeny Testing Programme:

Farmers who produce male calves out of nominated mating will get very encouraging price for the bull calf ranging from Rs. 8000 to Rs. 10000 per calf.

These High Genetic Merit bulls that are produced by PTP will be distributed to various semen stations where they produce thousands of doses of quality semen during their life span which will cover thousands of breedable cows and help in genetic improvement of the breed and there by enhance the productivity of livestock.

AI services are provided at door step of the farmers and the villages will get special health coverage under PTP.

Any educated unemployed youth are trained to work as, AI technician, milk recorder supervisor etc.

Employment is generated to around 264 rural youth who are engaged as Gopalamitras, Exclusive Milk Recorders, Supervisors, Data Entry Operators and Milk testers in Progeny Testing Programme.