Peak AltaOrvar tops bull rankings with £925 PLI

A new entrant has taken the top spot on the genomic Holstein sires list in the latest bull rankings published by the AHDB.

Peak AltaOrvar is a young bull – sired by AltaZeolite and out of an AltaPlinko dam – predicted to excel for daughter fertility, with a fertility index (FI) among the breed leaders, at 12.8.

He also has high predicted transmitting abilities (PTAs) for protein, at 37.2kg and +0.12%, all contributing to his profitable lifetime index (PLI) of £925.

See also: 4 ways to breed your dairy cows to cut feed bills

Former front runner Denovo 2776 Leeds is now in second position with a PLI of £901. This sire’s PTAs of 1,308kg milk and 91.3kg combined fat and protein indicate his daughters will have exceptional production.

Moving up into third position is Peak AltaMorpheus (PLI £897), also the highest lifespan transmitter in the top 10. Daughters of this bull are expected to live 168 days longer than average.

Daughter-proven bulls

In the daughter-proven bull rankings, Genosource Captain is back at the top of the list.

This bull has been a long-term leader within the Holstein breed, both as a young, genomic sire and now with 180 daughters milking in the UK, adding to his international figures.

Captain is a leading production bull, with a PLI of £814 together with a PTA of 1,219kg for milk.

Genosource Captain

Genosource Captain © Han Hopman

He also has good ratings for calf survival (2.4), and is the leading bull for feed advantage, meaning producers can expect efficient feed conversion from his daughters.

Second place is taken by FB Kenobi Targaryen (PLI £808), who graduates from the young genomic sire listings, with 134 UK milking daughters.

His high protein PTA of 39.6kg confirms his genomic prediction, and he is also a big somatic cell count (SCC) improver, at SCC -25.

Breeders specifically seeking to improve udder health can look to third-place bull Westcoast River: an SCC index of -30 and mastitis at -3 contribute to his PLI of £789.

He has more than 100 new daughters bolstering his figures, and a lifespan index of +134 days, outstanding FI (16.1), and a HealthyCow figure of £337.

Spring block-calving sires

As spring-block calving herds begin drying off cows, they can look for next season’s sires in the new ranking for spring calving index (SCI).

Taking the top spot of this across-breed ranking, up from third place, is high health and fertility Jersey sire VJ Groenbjerg Lobo Lobster.

He has 94 UK daughters contributing to excellent milk solids figures and an SCI of £583. He also has the highest daughter lifespan of the top 20 sires and high daughter fertility.

Equally impressive on daughter fertility is the Holstein sire Progenesis Wimbledon (SCI £582), which ranks second. A higher kilogram milk transmitter, he also rates well for udder health.

Holstein sire Denovo Invictus is in third place, and on a par with Wimbledon for daughter fertility. Just tipping Wimbledon for SCC improvement, he earns an SCI of £571.

Autumn block-calving sires

The autumn calving index (ACI) ranking is still led by Progenesis Wimledon (ACI £678), a Holstein bull sporting the highest combination of fat and protein percentages of the top 20. He also leads for lameness advantage across this group.

Westcoast River climbs a few places to reach second position (ACI £677), standing out for good udder health traits and daughter fertility.

A new entry in third place is FB Kenobi Targaryen (ACI £664), which becomes the highest protein transmitter of the group.

Friesian sires

Dutch-bred Bloemplaat Hoeve Ewoud has moved up the Friesian rankings to take the lead in this breed’s evaluations.

This son of Bernard transmits high milk solids, with PTAs of 13.7kg fat and 13.1kg protein, alongside cell count reduction (SCC -11), all of which helps earn him a PLI of £303.

Friesian Bloemplaat Hoeve Ewoud

Friesian Bloemplaat Hoeve Ewoud © Alger Meekma


A new leader has risen to the top of the Jersey rankings in the shape of Danish-bred VJ Hoeholt Jern James, with a PLI of £442. This good udder health improver (-20 SCC, -1 mastitis) also scores well for daughter fertility at 7.5.


VR Vilano is the new number one in the Ayrshire ranking, offering a favourable lifespan of +82 days, high daughter fertility (FI +9) and good all-round production.

He now weighs in with a PLI of £442, edging the former number one sire, VR Venom, into second place.

Venom’s PLI of £439 reflects high percentage fat transmission at +0.22% and particularly high daughter FI of +17.7. This contributes to a HealthyCow of £202.

More breeds

Further dairy breed indexes are published online, where Montbeliarde, Brown Swiss, Guernsey, Shorthorn and Fleckvieh are all represented.