By George Wiggans and Ashley Sanders
Elite status is determined based on percentile ranking for Net Merit within each breed. Cows in the 99th percentile among Holsteins or the 97th percentile and above among Red and White cows are designated Elite. The Net Merit percentile rank stored on the record of dual registered (Holstein/Red and White) cows is the rank within the Holstein breed and, previous to August 2003, consideration for Elite status was within the breed of the primary ID (in this case, Holstein). This prevented dual registered cows not coded as Elite among Holsteins from appearing on the Red and White Elite list. To determine the eligibility of these cows for Red and White Elite status, the Holstein percentile matching the Net Merit threshold for the 97th percentile among Red and White cows is identified (for August 2003, this was the 83rd percentile). The Elite code 'W' is assigned to dual registered cows with a Holstein percentile rank between this theshold and 98 (a percentile rank of 99 already has the Elite code 'E'). The Red and White Elite list includes Red and White cows with an Elite code 'E' and dual registered cows with an Elite code 'E' or 'W'. Dual registered cows on the Red and White Elite list will appear in the Elite file (105el) with their Red and White ID. If they also meet the requirement for Holstein Elite status, they will have a second entry in the Elite file with their Holstein ID. In the Elite file, 'W' is replaced with 'E' in the Elite code field for the Red and White records of dual Registered cows. Cows are included in the 105hi file (Evaluations for the top 5% of cows by breed) based solely on percentile rank in the breed of primary registration. Therefore, some dual registered cows on the Red and White Elite list will not appear in the 105hi file.