As part of a Department of Agriculture, Food and The Marine-funded project entitled ‘Accelerating genetic gain and improving beef output from the dairy herd’, applications are invited for two positions leading to a PhD degree.
The overall objectives of the project are:
• to test the capability of in vitro embryo production and embryo transfer techniques to accelerate genetic gain.
• to increase the value of beef calves produced from the dairy herd.
With future use of sex-sorted semen in dairy herds set to increase, this project will address three important consequences:
• in the face of a marked decline in the number of male dairy calf births, we will develop an effective strategy for breeding the next generation of elite breeding stock that are suitable to sustain or accelerate genetic gain in the national herd;
• in the context of a smaller proportion of the herd being inseminated with dairy semen, we will develop an effective strategy for breeding the next generation of elite beef breeding stock that are suitable for use on dairy dams that are not suitable for generating replacements;
• with increasing scrutiny on the beef value of the calves from dairy dams with poor beef merit, we will assess the potential role of transferring low-cost beef embryos into dairy dams that are not suitable to generate replacement heifers, thereby generating a beef calf with high economic value.
The stipend of €24,000 per annum includes university fees of up to a maximum of €6,000 and is tenable for 4 years.
Interested candidates should submit an electronic copy of Curriculum Vitae and a letter of interest simultaneously to Prof. Pat Lonergan (email@example.com) and Dr. Stephen Butler (firstname.lastname@example.org). The closing date for applications is October 31st 2021.