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Traits Other Than Production (TOP)

Assessing the Animal

Traits Other than Production (TOP) refer to the behaviour, temperament and physical attributes of a cow and are scored separately on a scale from one to nine. The four farmer-scored and 14 inspector-scored TOP traits are considered highly important in relation to the overall efficiency of dairy cattle.


Data Processing

Once an animal is assessed, data is sent to New Zealand Animal Evaluation (NZAEL) where within herd, region and national comparisons are analysed and processed. This information is then added to the national database and proof of sire.


Farmer Scored Management Traits

Describes how soon the heifer settled into the milking routine after calving.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
slowly quickly 6.12

Describes the temperament of the heifer in the farm dairy while being handled and milked.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
nervous placid 6.28

Describes the milking speed of the heifer.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
slow fast 6.33

Describes the farmer’s overall acceptance of the heifer as a herd member.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
undesirable desirable 6.57

 


Health Traits

Describes the height at the shoulders of the heifer in five centimetre bands.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
small tall 5.75

Describes depth and width of chest and body in relation to the physical size of the heifer.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
frail capacious 6.34

Describes the angle of a line between the centre of the hips and the top of the pins.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
high pins sloping 4.79

Describes the width of pins, hips and thurls relative to the size of the heifer.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
narrow wide 6.17

Describes the straightness or curvature of the back legs while the heifer is walking.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
straight curved 6.18

Describes the strength of the suspensory ligament, and the udder depth relative to the hocks.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
weak strong 6.02

Describes the attachment of the front udder to the body wall.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
loose strong 5.70

Describes the height and width of the rear udder attachment.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
low high 5.76

Describes the placement of the front teats relative to the centre of the quarters.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
wide close 4.53

Describes the placement of the rear teats relative to the centre of the quarters.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
loose strong 5.84

Assesses the desirability of all traits pertaining to the udder.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
undesirable desirable 5.71

Assesses the desirability of all traits pertaining to dairy conformation, but excluding udder traits.

Low Score High Score Base Cow Average
undesirable desirable 6.45