Culling of Agricultural Animals

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Culling of Agricultural Animals


the separation of animals from a herd because of age, barrenness, incurable illness, or serious physical defect. The process takes place each year in every herd, with the goal of improving its qualitative indexes (such as productivity and breed value).

Culled animals are put on feed and fattened. The yearly number of culled animals depends on the purpose of the farm, the type and age of the animals, the intensity of their use, the volume of the herd’s reproduction, and the sales quotas to the government of meat and other animal products. In nonbreeding herds about 10–15 percent of the cows are culled annually; in breed herds, 15–18 percent. All bullocks in commercial herds go to fattening and slaughter, but in breeding herds the large part stay in the herd. In dairy herds up to 50 percent of the calves may be culled, and 50 percent are left to replenish the herd. On pig-breeding farms up to 20–30 percent of the pigs are culled annually, and in the period of the piglets’ growth, as much as 50 percent of the sows and 70 percent or more of the boars.

In the USSR, culling of agricultural herds is carried on by special commissions on the basis of established criteria for agricultural animals. The culling of agricultural herds is officially registered by an act of the commission, subject to the approval of the agricultural management of the raion executive committee.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.