Horns Recognised as a Genetic Condition

September 1, 2020 3:45 pm

The Angus Australia Board has resolved to officially include horns in the list of genetic conditions monitored by the Society.  

Angus cattle are expected to be homozygous polled, meaning that they are not only visually polled, but carry two copies of the polled allele. Recent DNA testing has however revealed that there is a small percentage, albeit an extremely low number, of Angus seedstock animals that are carrying the horned allele.  

The inclusion of horns in the list of genetic conditions monitored by the Society will ensure the same strategy is adopted for the managing the horned allele as is currently adopted for by Angus Australia for managing other genetic conditions with low frequency and relatively low economic impact, such as Alpha Mannosidosis (MA), Dwarfism (DW), Oculocutaneous Hypopigmentation (OH) and Osteopetrosis (OS).  

This includes: 

  • the availability of a DNA test to enable members to identify whether an animal is carrying the horned allele 
  • the display of the result for any animals that are DNA tested on the Angus Database Search, and in other Angus Australia publications (e.g. registration certificates, catalogues) 
  • a requirement for all AI sires born after 1/1/18 to be DNA tested for the presence of the horned allele   

The conduct of a gene probability analysis is not deemed necessary at this stage. 

To further discuss the inclusion of horns in the list of genetic conditions monitored by Angus Australia, please contact Andrew Byrne, Breed Development & Extension Manager, on (02) 6773 4618 or andrew@angusaustralia.com.au. 

 

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