Canadian Angus Performance Program (CAPP)
The Canadian Angus Association strives to provide its members with tools to improve breed health and profitability. The most powerful breeding tools used to evaluate cattle herds are Expected Progeny Differences (EPDs). EPDs are values that predict how the future progeny of an animal will perform relative to the progeny of other animals in the breed. EPDs allow for a fair comparison of animals in different herds, and even in different countries. Learn more about EPDs here.
Members who participate in the Canadian Angus Performance Program make educated decisions about which animals to keep in their herds and which animals to use for breeding. These members have the advantage of working with EPDs.
Participating in the Canadian Angus Performance Program is easy. Each member creates an inventory of their herd. The CAPP program is based on total herd reporting. This means every cow in the herd inventory must have either a calf or an action code reported by six months after the calf is born (use the Herd Inventory and Spring/Fall Application for Registration worksheets to do this). Calves are not required to be registered but they must be recorded with an appropriate tattoo/tag identification number, birth date, and sex.
Members also submit performance, fertility, and carcass data on easy to use paper or electronic worksheets (online weight entry instructions). The 205-day worksheet lists all calves recorded in the herd. A weight or calf fate code must be recorded for each one. The 205-day weight is a mandatory weight and the most important weight for genetic evaluation purposes. A calf’s potential to grow and its mother’s ability to milk and raise a calf is generated from this information.
Weigh dates must be planned to occur when the average age of the contemporary group is closest to 205 days of age. Currently the age range is 130–280 days for red Angus animals and 120–280 days for black Angus animals. Similar to the 205-day weight, it is important to calculate the optimum 365-day weigh date. The age range for yearling weights is 290–440 days.
In addition, proper contemporary grouping is important. As defined by the Beef Improvement Federation Guidelines 7th Edition, a contemporary group is a group of cattle of similar age that are of the same breed and sex and have been treated equally (same location, on the same feed and pasture for example).
Worksheets for carcass data are also generated for ultrasound. Participation in the Centralized Ultrasound Program (CUP) is extremely valuable, in particular for those herds using carcass traits as part of their selection criteria for herd improvement. Images and data collected through the CUP program using a CUP certified technician can be used to generate EPD values and as a basis to compare these traits between animals.
National Cattle Evaluations are conducted monthly for Black Angus cattle and biannually for Red Angus cattle. The data submitted by members on the Canadian Angus Performance Program is computed in conjunction with the American Angus Association (for Black Angus animals) and the Red Angus Association of America (for Red Angus animals). EPDs for all North American Angus animals are therefore comparable to each other. However, an EPD for a black animal is not comparable to that of a red animal.
Parental average EPDs are available for all calves that don’t have a National Cattle Evaluation EPD. A Parental average EPD can only be provided for a calf if both its parents have national EPDs.
Animals’ EPDs are listed on their registration certificates and on their pedigrees on our website. Angus cattle purchasers recognize the value of EPDs and often ask for them.
For more information about the Performance Program contact the Association by email or at 1-888-571-3580.
How to Participate
The Canadian Angus Performance Program (CAPP) works on a whole herd reporting system. Once committed to participating in the program, the entire female inventory must have either a calf or a cow status code reported for each female. Similarly, birth and performance information for all calves (registered or not) must be reported.
To begin: CAPP members start by filling out the Herd Inventory and Application for Registration (Spring/Fall) worksheet. Calves are not required to be registered but they must be recorded with an appropriate tattoo/tag identification number, birth date and sex. A Missing Data Worksheet will be generated for any female animals that have not been accounted for. These forms must be filled out and sent back to the Canadian Angus Association office before the performance analysis can proceed.
The spring calving season falls between December 1 and May 31. Members with spring herds receive their Herd Inventory and Application for Registration in January.
The fall calving season falls between June 1 and November 30. Members with fall herds receive their Herd Inventory and Application for Registration in July.
- Birth Averages Summary Report
- 205-Day Worksheets
Canadian Angus Association staff will use the herd inventory and calf registration information to generate 205-day weight worksheets. Calves must be weighed as close to 205 days of age as possible. The acceptable range of age for weaning weight is 120 to 280 days. Animals that are weighed on different days will be put into separate management groups. So, it is best to weigh all the calves in a management group on the same day. All calves must have either a calf fate code or performance data reported. A Missing Data Worksheet will be generated to notify members if any data is missing.
Contemporary grouping is a very important function of EPDs. The evaluation is based on comparative performance of animals treated in the same manner. This allows us to remove the environmental bias on performance and estimate the true genetic merit of each animal. As defined by the Beef Improvement Federation Guidelines 7th Edition, a contemporary group is a group of cattle of similar age that are of the same breed and sex and have been raised in the same management group (same location, on the same feed and pasture, etc.). Maximizing the size of contemporary groups is recommended. However, it is common for breeders to have more than one contemporary group due to animals being managed differently from the main group because of shows, illness, or location. Contemporary groups are labeled in numeric format from 1-99.
Once the completed 205-day weight information is processed and all calves are accounted for, performance reports, EPD reports and 365-day worksheets are generated.
- 205-day Weaning Report
- Weaning Averages Summary
- 365-day Weight Worksheet
- Calf, Sire and Dam EPD Reports
- Ultrasound Barn Worksheets
The reporting of 365-day weights is recommended, but not mandatory. This weight provides information on the animal’s ability for post-weaning growth. Similar to the 205-day weight, it is important to calculate the optimum 365-day weigh date. In addition, proper contemporary group allocation is important. The acceptable age range for yearling weights is 290–440 days.
Adjusted Weaning Weight Calculation:
Post-Weaning Average Daily Gain =
(Yearling Weight – Weaning Weight) / (Age at Yearling Weight – Age at Weaning)
Adjusted Yearling Weight Calculation:
Adjusted Yearling Weight = Post-Weaning Average Daily Gain x 160 + Adjusted Weaning Weight
When calves are registered, you have the option of receiving the registration certificates upon registration or putting them on hold until the yearling weight has been submitted. If papers have been put on hold, they will be released at this time.
The submission of the 365-day weight completes the CAPP process for each calf crop. The participating animals should all receive EPDs. Please click here for a guide on how to use EPDs successfully.
Data can be submitted on paper or online. Click here for online weight entry instructions.
Notice to all Performance Program Members – performance data that is not submitted on association generated work sheet – on paper or online will no longer be accepted by the Association. Weights written on random pieces of paper, or emailed to Association staff without using a proper work sheet is of limited value because there is often pertinent information missing, and will, therefore, not be accepted by the association.