Calving traits

Time to read: ca 1 min

Calving traits for which breeding values are calculated are calving ease and stillbirths.

Photo of Norwegian Red calv on green grass
Calving ease has been a part of the Norwegian Red breeding goal since 1978. Photo: Eva Husaas

Calving ease index (2.9% of TMI)

The frequency of calving difficulty in the Norwegian Red population is very low compared to other breeds. Calving ease is scored by the farmer as the difficulty of calving with 1=none, 2=some and 3=large difficulties. 93% of all calvings (all lactations) have no difficulty.

Both paternal/direct calving ease (calving ease attributed to sire of calf) and maternal calving ease (how daughters of a bull perform when they calve) are included in the calving ease index.

Rump angle is an important trait related to calving difficulties. With the move to genomic selection, maternal calving ease has a lower reliability compared
to reliability under the progeny test program. The indirect information on rump angle in TMI now adds significantly to the accuracy for selection to improve maternal calving ease.

Trait Relative weight (%)
Calving ease, direct/paternal 20.7
Calving ease, maternal 31.0
Rump angle 48.3


Stillbirths Index (0.6% of TMI)

Both paternal/direct stillbirth (stillbirth attributed to sire of calf) and maternal stillbirth (stillbirth attributed to the daughters of a bull) are included in the stillbirth index.

Information about stillbirths is based on the calving information that is registered by the farmer in the Norwegian Dairy Herd Recording System.

The frequency of stillbirths in the Norwegian Red population is low, but it is still included in the breeding goal to prevent the frequency to increase.

Norwegian Dairy Herd Recording System

The Norwegian Dairy Herd Recording System is run by the national dairy co-operative owned by Norwegian dairy farmers, TINE. It is certified by ICARs Certificate of Quality (International Committee for Animal Recording).

Data is collected from almost all dairy farmers in Norway, and from a whole range of sources.

Read more about the Norwegian Dairy Herd Recording System here