Genetics for the Everyday Dairy Herd

An animal’s genetic information is in the form of chromosomes, housed within the nucleus of every cell. Dairy cattle have 30 pairs of chromosomes for a total of 60. Chromosomes are made up of many strands of DNA. Genes, the basic unit of inheritance are specific portions of a cell’s DNA. Each gene codes for a specific trait, such as polled verse horned animals.

In the factsheet Genetics for the Everyday Dairy Herd, UW-Extension Dodge County Dairy & Livestock Agent Amanda Young describes gene expression, genetic progress, and tradeoffs among the elements of genetic change.

For more information regarding dairy reproduction and genetics, visit UW-Extension Dairy Reproduction & Genetics.

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