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Belfair Registry Rules & Regulations

Belfair Cattle Herd Book Divisions

The International Livestock Registries establishes herd books to register unique breeds or composite populations of cattle, and to document and maintain their pedigrees and records for future generations. In the Belfair Cattle Registry (BCR), only animals from approved breeds (or breed composition) will be accepted for registry in the BCR Division I and Division II. Animals not meeting requirements for the Belfair herd book may be recorded in the International Dairy Cattle Registry, and may produce calves that qualify for the Belfair Cattle Registry.

breed composition fractions & percentages

Belfair cow
Photo credit: Renee Ekum,Triple E Acres Farm, Wisconsin

Belfair Cattle Registry Rules, Divisions and definitions proposed above are in development and subject to amendment as necessary to further meet Belfair breeder needs. The rules below are adapted from the current International Dairy Cattle Registry Rules & Regulations, and are also subject to amendedment over time as needed, to more closely meet Belfair breeders' needs.


See the Belfair Cattle Registry home page.

Registration Certificates

Percentage of all breeds and pedigrees will be recorded and listed on the registry certificate. Any breed percentage of two or less may be dropped and added to the predominant breed if genotypically and phenotypically similar. Animals greater than 99% of any breed, will not be rounded up to 100%, nor upgraded from purebred to fullblood. Fullblood is restricted to animals with 100% purity. Letter abbreviations for breeds will be determined, in part, by accepted national and international cattle industry standards.

Animals in the Belfair Cattle Registry will be eligible for all programs of the Registry. To be eligible for these programs futurities and shows, animals must be registered in the Belfair Cattle Registry.

Application for registration must be made on a form provided by the International Livestock Registries, the Belfair Cattle Registry, a photocopy of approved breed certificate, or other forms that may be approved and/or accepted.

The application for registry shall state the bloodlines of the ancestors of the animal. If either the sire or dam of any animal is registered in an International Livestock Registries (ILR) cattle herd book, this name and registry number must be used. If either the sire or dam is registered in another breed association, that name and registry number must be used. If either the sire or dam is unregistered, an identification number and or name must be given on the application. This identification must not be duplicated on any other animal in the herd. This animal will then be given an identifier number in the Belfair Cattle Registry (BCR) and must be used when registering other resulting offspring. If no identification number is known or given the sire and/or dam will be listed on the certificate of registry as "unknown". If any animal designated as "unknown" is alive or photo is available, a photo is required for records.

All cattle shall be named and may not consist of more than 30 spaces, including any prefixes or suffixes. Punctuation is not permitted. Animals in pedigree already registered with punctuated names cannot be changed, but may have puctuation omitted in some uses for data processing. Names shall not duplicate names of animals previously registered. The following suffixes are required:

A heifer born twin to a bull calf can be recorded, but not registered until she is proven to be fertile by DNA test results, or by producing a DNA Parentage Verified proven calf.

Breeder's prefix (herd name) may be used as the first part of the animal's name.

The breeder of an animal is the recorded owner or lessee of the dam at time of breeding (conception).

For offspring of leased females a completed and signed BCR Lease Agreement by the lessor and lessee must be submitted and filed with the BCR. The lessee shall be considered the breeder of any offspring conceived during the time period of the lease agreement of the dam.

Offspring of a dam registered in the Belfair Cattle Registry must be registered to the owner or lessee of dam at time of calving.

Required animal identification shall be in the form of 2 or more of the following:

International Year Letter Designation for Animal Identification

The tattoo can be located in one or both ears of the animal and must contain standard Arabic numbers and English Letters. No two animals of the same sex registered by the same breeder shall be given identical tattoos EXCEPT a breeder may use the same mark and location on the same sex animal after ten years. The tattoo and its location shall be stated on application for registration. Documentation must be provided for brand, RFID or microchips.

Applications may be rejected where, due to birth dates, phenotype or other irregularities, they are deemed to be unreliable. It is provided, however, that a request for review may be made and an offer to the person submitting the application to make corrections. Applications shall include the following statement: "As recorded owner or authorized agent of the Dam of this animal at time of birth, (I / we) hereby certify that all information on this registration application is true and correct to the best of my knowledge, and that the Belfair Cattle Registry shall have the privilege to correct and/or cancel this application under the Rules and Regulations of the Registry. By submitting this document, (I / we) hereby agree to be bound by the terms and conditions of the Belfair Cattle Registry."

Resolving Errors in Registry

The following policy with regard to resolving registry errors has been adopted. A letter is to be sent to the owner requesting that the discrepancy be checked and verification of the correct information be sent to the Belfair Cattle Registry. If no response is received to the first letter, a second letter shall be sent stating that the situation must be rectified or, all animals in question may be expunged from the records of the Belfair Cattle Registry.

Transfer of Ownership

Sale of all animals registered in the Belfair Cattle Registry should be reported to the Belfair Cattle Registry within 30 days of sale. The fee for transfer of ownership reported within 30 days of sale shall be less than the fee for sales reported after 60 days. Transfer of ownership shall be made on forms supplied by the Registry and the seller is expected to furnish the buyer promptly with a transferred certificate giving the correct date of sale and paying the fee unless stipulated when the animal is sold that the buyer is responsible for transfer fee. Any transfer may be cancelled by the Registry upon application by both parties or upon application of one party and due notice given to the other party. Transfers will be cancelled only for error or where delivery of the animal was not consummated.

Registry of Herd Name / Prefix

The Belfair Cattle Registry shall maintain a list of reserved herd names (prefix) which may not be infringed upon. Breeders may register their herd name (prefix) at no charge. Members of an immediate family may, by written consent of the prefix holder, use the same herd prefix. Principle owner of farm must be named if the animals are registered in the farm name.

Fraud or Deception

The provisions of the rules with respect to fraud and deception shall be applicable.

Genetic Traits, Defects, Conditions, Abnormalities

It is now realized that all breeds, and all cattle, (indeed all animals), are expected to carry hidden recessive mutated gene alleles in their DNA, that would cause (if in homozygous form) unwanted genetic conditions, defects, diseases or abnormalities. Read more about genetic mutations here. And bookmark the Directory of Genetic Diseases found in North American breeds of cattle found on the Homestead & Miniature Cattle Directory website.

DNA TESTING: The Belfair Cattle Registry (BCR) strongly encourages DNA testing along with registration and before breeding their Belfair cattle. Fees are kept modest to encourage members to breed healthy registered cattle and to support developing an ideal Belfair cow. BCR's policy is to record DNA test results for cattle, as they are currently known or as they become known. Animals that test positive to a deleterious recessive mutation, will be labeled as a carrier on its registration certificate to allow breeders avoid known genetic diseases. Breeders that understand genetics and the function of DNA testing realize that animals tested to carry 1 copy (heterozygous) of an undesirable recessive mutation, are no less valuable for breeding. Carrier status simply constitutes a warning that it should only be bred to tested free animals.

ETHICS: The Belfair Cattle Registry considers it unethical to offer or advertise any animals or genetics for sale from cattle that are positive or potential carriers of genetic defects and neglect to divulge that information.

DNA Typing and Verification of Records

The Belfair Cattle Registry is committed to the accuracy and integrity of animals that are registered and accepted into the herd book.

The Belfair Cattle Registry contracts with Neogen Geneseek as the primary provider of DNA genotyping and testing. Neogen offers an affordable BBR test, to determine if a cow carries high enough % Jersey to qualify as a purebred. The Belfair Cattle Registry will also accept test results from other genetic laboratories that have results accepted and approved by other Registries, Associations and Organizations in the cattle industry.

Contact the Belfair Cattle Registry for proper forms and instructions for DNA or blood typing work.

All animals that are required to have DNA typing must have a DNA genotype on file with the Registry. When parent verification is required, animal must be parent verified to sire and dam via DNA typing. The only exception to this is where one or both parents are deceased and there is no method for acquiring a sample for DNA typing.

The Belfair Cattle Registry requires DNA typing and/or parent verification for the following situations:

BULLS - DNA and Blood Typing Rules

All bulls whose semen has been or will be collected for use in Artificial Insemination must be DNA parentage verified or genotyped. Any bull used for Artificial Insemination must also be tested for any undesirable genetic abnormalities that are a possibility. The DNA typing and testing shall be done at the owner's expense and the results of these test must be made available to the Belfair Cattle Registry before use of the semen to produce calves eligible for ILR registration.

Bulls that are registered with other Registries and Associations have similar rules and regulations regarding the DNA and blood typing of bulls. Any bull that is or has been registered with any other Registry or Association shall abide by the rules regarding the DNA and blood typing rules of that registry and make available to the Belfair Cattle Registry the results of such tests as required.

Semen Identification of Bulls

Bulls being used for breeding by artificial insemination must have proper identification of the semen for accuracy of information and for international cross-referencing to insure that offspring resulting from artificial insemination can be properly identified.

The accepted requirements for identifying each unit (straw, ampule, etc.) of semen are as follows:

  1. The name and registration number of the bull.
  2. NAAB (National Association of Animal Breeders) stud code of the organization freezing semen.
  3. Breed Code (This is the 2 letter internationally recognized code for his breed)
  4. Bull Code Number (the number assigned by the collecting stud)
  5. In the case of semen that has been imported from other countries, some do not follow these same rules and requirements regarding the identification used on the units of semen. Many of them identify bulls by a herdbook number. When these situations arise and to make cross-referencing with the NAAB and others in the use of the semen and properly coding and identifying the bulls, bulls must be listed and registered with the Belfair Cattle Registry and the herdbook number must become part of the name. The fee for registering and listing foreign bulls regardless of age with the Belfair Cattle Registry shall be at the lowest current rate for registering animals. The entity that has processed the semen must have a stud code number that has been assigned to them by the NAAB and then assign NAAB coding as outlined above, that can be used for the purpose of international animal ID cross-referencing.

NAAB Cross-Referencing Program

The NAAB Cross-Reference Program maintains identification information on bulls which have been assigned NAAB codes. Use of NAAB codes by beef producers for sire identification purposes continues to be popular. NAAB has a database which cross-references NAAB codes to official identification numbers as a service to bull owners. Participation in this service is open to any qualified owner or lessor of bulls which have had semen collected.

The NAAB cross-reference database also maintains information on bulls which make genetic evaluations more useful. Many cows have their sires identified by the NAAB code. Many service sires are identified by their NAAB code when breeding data is recorded for farm management purposes. By participating in the NAAB Cross Reference Program allows for these numbers to be converted to official identification numbers.

Enrolling a bull in the NAAB Cross-Reference Program automatically gets him listed in Beef or Dairy Bulls in A.I. Dairy Bulls in A.I. are distributed to DHI supervisors, A.I. Sire Analysts, DRPC's, dairy producers and others inquiring about sire identity. The NAAB Cross-Reference Program corresponds with the USDA-AIPL (Council on Dairy cattle Breeding - CDCB) genetic evaluations. Beef Bulls in A.I. are enrolled in the NAAB Cross-Reference Program which allows for improved identification of their offspring and greatly enhances the bull having a most complete genetic evaluation.

Please contact the Belfair Cattle Registry for forms and more information concerning enrolling bulls in the NAAB Cross-Reference Program.

COWS - DNA and Blood Typing Rules

All females used as donor dams in an embryo transfer program must be DNA genotyped and tested. The DNA typing and testing shall be done at the owner's expense and the results of these test will be made available to the Belfair Cattle Registry.

Donor females that are not registered with the Belfair Cattle Registry must have DNA type on file with the breed association that the donor is registered in or be DNA typed with the results reported to the Belfair Cattle Registry.

CALVES: All offspring to be registered resulting from matings where the dam was bred to more than one sire within twenty-four days, whether by artificial insemination or natural mating will be evaluated for required sire verification by DNA typing. Using a 10 day window on either side of the calf's date of birth for service dates and if multiple AI Dates and/or the beginning Natural Service date falls within this 10 day window, the calf must be DNA typed for sire verification. The DNA typing and testing shall be done at the owner's expense and the results of these tests must be on file with the Belfair Cattle Registry before a registration certificate will be issued.

RANDOM DNA TYPING: The Belfair Cattle Registry reserves the right to request that DNA typing be required should parentage be in question. This DNA typing will be at the owners expense. Also on occasion the Belfair Cattle Registry may AT THE REGISTRY'S EXPENSE randomly request that DNA typing be performed before a registration certificate will be issued.

EXCEPTIONS: The Belfair Cattle Registry shall reserve the right to grant exception pertaining to parent verification if the sire and/or dam are deceased.

OTHER: Samples from animals that are submitted for DNA typing may be parent verified if the DNA typing records are on file for the sire and/or dam.

After an animal has been registered with the Belfair Cattle Registry, and should such registration come into question for its validity, the Registry shall have the power to suspend the registration and investigate the matter. If it is found that the animal has been registered improperly, then the animal and any offspring of said animal will be corrected or removed from the Registry.

If an animal has been accepted for registration using current method of parent verification at the time of registration, the parentage of the animal shall not be questioned in the future even though a newer method of parent verification becomes available which is more accurate.

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Belfair Cattle Registry
registered with International Dairy Cattle Registry
an International Livestock Registries (ILR) Division
P.O. Box 118, Butler, MO 64730 • (816) 738-4179