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Virtual Cow

The virtual cow is an innovative educational and breeding tool with the potential to transform understanding of the form, movement and condition of the milking cow. The 3D model graphically illustrates the differences in conformation between cows with various classification scores.

The tool can be spun 360° through an axis, with each of the standard 18 linear traits being viewed individually to see the impact of a breeding decision on the structure of the animal. The virtual cow can be viewed from a variety of angles and it is accompanied by a written description of how and where each trait is measured. It also demonstrates a range of body condition scores as well as actual cow locomotion.

Introduction Page

The Virtual Cow was born following many years of research. It is aimed to aid the understanding of dairy breeding and help to develop the skills of UK farmers, young and old. The tool is available to all members and HYB members of Holstein UK which can be accessed through the quick links on the Holstein UK and HYB website. To be able to use this tool simply enter your prefix and pin number on the members area of the Holstein UK website or if an HYB member log onto the HYB website using your surname and pin number.

The Perfect Cow

For farmers and others interested in bull selection, the virtual cow has the added benefit of relating to each trait to the linear type profile for a bull – commonly expressed as a bar chart – so aiding bull selection and breed improvement across the national dairy herd.

Individual Scoring Traits

When viewing each linear, a slider can be moved through all of the trait scores from 1-9 illustrating the degree and effect of the trait on the animal. Video’s demonstrating the movement scores of locomotion from 1-9 are also available, along with three 3D examples of Condition Scores 1, 5 and 9.