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BDGP female replacement strategy deadline 31st October 2021

Under the replacement strategy, you agreed to have 50% of your reference number of animals as GENOTYPED 4 or 5-stars on the Replacement Index within and/or across breed by the 31st October 2021. Martina Harrington, Teagasc Beef Specialist, has guidance on meeting the BDGP female replacement deadline

To be eligible, females must also be at least 16 months of age by the 31st of October i.e. born before 30th June 2020 and be born after the 1st of January 2013 if moved into the herd on/after 5th June 2015.

This reference number is written on your BDGP Eurostar reports and looks like this


The penalty for not meeting this target is a 100% of your gross payment, that is before the cost of genotyping. In round figures, this means that if you were being paid €1,600, you will get no payment from the BDGP scheme this year and you will be deducted a further €440 from another scheme such as BPS and you will also have to pay for your genotype tags.

Where are you now? 

ICBF last ran a genomic evaluation on the 27th of July, the next evaluation will be published on the 28th of September and will include all DNA samples received by the lab before the 7th of July.  If you login to ICBF, click on BDGP Eligibility 2021 you will see the screen below, it’s very clear as to your position. This is a live profile, updated daily. If you click on the female tab you will see all your females and their star ratings. In the example below the farmer is very tight, he cannot afford to sell any 4 or 5 star animals

Not meeting the 50% requirement  - what can you do?

If you posted your tags away before the 7th of July they will be in the next run on the 28th of September, you can wait and check your eligibility report then. To check their predicted replacement index, go to services, BDGP and self-selection, this will show you the tag requested and the predicted replacement index. If the sire is correct and the predicted replacement index is greater than €102 you could assume that she will be > 4 star, just ensure to check the date of birth is before the 30th June 2020.

There is one more genomic evaluation to run on the 23rd of November, which is after the deadline. You may have genotype tags sent away and be hoping that some females will qualify from this run. This strategy is risky, if they do not qualify then you have missed the deadline and will receive a 140% penalty. The deadline to have samples returned to the lab for the November evaluation has now passed, so it is too late to sample ungenotyped 4/5-star females in the hope that they will be eligible in the November evaluation.

If you do not have ungenotyped 4 or 5 star females due to receive a genomic evaluation before the end of the programme, your only option to meet your herd’s Oct 2021 requirement is to purchase eligible females. These purchased females will need to: 

  1. Have a genomic evaluation (genomic component included in Euro-Star Index).
  2. Be 4 or 5-stars on the Replacement Index within and/or across breed at the time of purchase.
  3. Be at least 16 months of age by the 31st of October i.e. born before 30th June 2020.
  4. Be born after the 1st of January 2013 if recently purchased.

Purchasing in a mart

Most marts are now displaying the Euro-Star Index details for females. The ICBF section on the mart screen now defines whether a female will be eligible for BDGP or not once purchased (see screenshot below). Where a female has a ‘Yes’ under ‘BDGP Eligible’, it will automatically be counted towards your eligible females target on entering the herd.

The ‘Mart Tracker’ facility on ICBF allows you to see the BDGP eligible females which are available in marts each day. 

Purchasing privately

Should you decide to purchase animals privately, ensure that you check the index and age details as listed above. After that you must be certain you are looking at the most up to date Euro-Star Index details for the animal(s). To be sure I would use the ICBF ‘Animal Search’ to check the index details of the animal (see screenshot below). It will show you date of birth and current evaluation. This is available on the ICBF website www.icbf.com. Alternatively, if using a smartphone you can use the ‘Animal Search App’ to check an animal’s Euro-Star Index. The app is available to download free for Apple and Android phones.   Do not use the index details in the BDGP Eligibility Report when buying animals as this is particular to the seller's farm.  

Monitor your situation

You can monitor your herd’s compliance online by logging into www.icbf.com. Under the ‘View Profiles’ dropdown click ‘BDGP Eligibility’. This profile is always up to take and will take into account purchases, sales death etc. Any targets which your herd is non-compliant on will be highlighted in red.

Read more on a previous article on BDGP here

The Teagasc Beef Specialists issue an article on a topic of interest to suckler & cattle farmers every Wednesday here on Teagasc Daily