Kent Weigel

Department Chair; Professor - Breeding and Genetics

30% Extension, 15% Instruction, 55% Research



Office Location

1675 Observatory Dr
266A Animal Sciences
Madison, WI 53706

Kent Weigel is Professor and Chair of the Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences at UW-Madison.  He holds research, extension and teaching appointments and serves a technical consultant for numerous companies and organizations in the dairy genetics industry.  His research focuses on genetic selection and genome-guided management programs to improve the productivity, health, fertility, and feed efficiency of dairy cattle using tools such as whole genome selection, advanced reproductive technologies, crossbreeding, electronic data capture systems, and artificial intelligence algorithms.  Dr. Weigel has published approximately 200 peer-reviewed journal articles on various aspects of genetic improvement and management of dairy cattle and has given lectures to academic, industry, and producer audiences in more than thirty countries. 

Selected Peer-Reviewed Articles

Brown, W., M. J. Martin, C. Siberski, J. E. Koltes, F. Peñagaricano, K. A. Weigel, and H. M. White. 2022. Predicting dry matter intake in mid-lactation Holstein cows using point-in-time data streams available on dairy farms. Journal of Dairy Science 105:(in press) (

Cavani, L., W. E. Brown, K. L. Parker Gaddis, R. J. Tempelman, M. J. VandeHaar, H. M. White, F. Peñagaricano, and K. A. Weigel. 2022. Estimates of genetic parameters for feeding behavior traits and their associations with feed efficiency in Holstein cows. Journal of Dairy Science 105:7564-7574 (

Zhang, F., K. A. Weigel, and V. E. Cabrera. 2022. Predicting daily milk yield for primiparous cows using data of within herd relatives to capture genotype-by-environment interactions. Journal of Dairy Science 105:6739-6748 (

Khanal, P., K. L, Parker Gaddis, M. J. VandeHaar, K. A. Weigel, H. White, F. Peñagaricano, J. E. Koltes, J. E. P. Santos, R. L. Baldwin, J. F. Burchard, J. W. Dürr, and R. J. Tempelman. 2022. Multiple trait random regression modeling of feed efficiency in US Holsteins. Journal of Dairy Science 105:5954-5971 (

Williams, K., K. A. Weigel, W. Coblentz, N. M. Esser, H. Schlesser, P. C. Hoffman, R. Ogden, H. Su, and M. S. Akins. 2022. Effect of diet energy level and genomic residual feed intake on bred Holstein dairy heifer growth and feed efficiency. Journal of Dairy Science 105:2201-2214 (

Martin, M. J., R. S. Pralle, I. R. Bernstein, M. J. VandeHaar, K. A. Weigel, Z. Zhou, and H. M. White. 2021. Circulating metabolites indicate differences in high and low residual feed intake Holstein dairy cows. Metabolites 11, 868 (

Martin, M. J., J. R. R. Dorea, M. R. Borchers, R. L. Wallace, S. J. Bertics, S. K. DeNise, K. A. Weigel, and H. M. White. 2021. Comparison of methods to predict feed intake and residual feed intake using behavioral and metabolite data in addition to classical performance variables. Journal of Dairy Science 104:8765-8782 (

Quick, A. E., J. Meronek, K. Amburn, K. Rozeboom, and K. A. Weigel. 2021. Predicting sperm production of young dairy bulls using collection history and management factors. Journal of Dairy Science 104:5817-5826 (

Martin, M. J., K. A. Weigel, and H. M. White. 2021. Assessment of the relationship between postpartum health and mid-lactation performance, behavior, and feed efficiency in Holstein dairy cows. Animals 11, 1385. (

Li, B., P. M. VanRaden, E. Gunal, D. J. Null, E. E. Connor, M. J. VandeHaar, R. J. Tempelman, K. A. Weigel, and J. B. Cole. 2020. Genomic prediction of residual feed intake in U.S. Holstein dairy cattle. Journal of Dairy Science 103:2477-2486 (

Pralle, R. S., N. E. Schultz, H. M. White, and K. A. Weigel. 2020. Hyperketonemia GWAS and parity dependent SNP associations in Holstein dairy cows intensively sampled for blood β-hydroxybutyrate concentration. Physiological Genomics (

Uddin, E. M., O. Santana, K. A. Weigel, and M. A Wattiaux. 2020. Enteric methane, lactation performance, digestibility, and metabolism of nitrogen and energy of Holsteins and Jerseys fed 2 levels of forage fiber from alfalfa silage or corn silage. Journal of Dairy Science 103:6087-6099 (

Li, B., P. M. VanRaden, E. Gunal, D. J. Null, E. E. Connor, M. J. VandeHaar, R. J. Tempelman, K. A. Weigel, and J. B. Cole. 2020. Genomic prediction of residual feed intake in U.S. Holstein dairy cattle. Journal of Dairy Science 103:2477-2486 (

Quick, A. E., T. L. Ollivett, B. W. Kirkpatrick, and K. A. Weigel. 2020. Genomic analysis of bovine respiratory disease and lung consolidation in pre-weaned Holstein calves using clinical scoring and lung ultrasound. Journal of Dairy Science 103:1632-1641 (

Schultz, N. E., and K. A. Weigel. 2019. Inclusion of herdmate data improves genomic prediction for milk production and feed efficiency traits within North American dairy herds. Journal of Dairy Science 102:11081-11091 (

Selected Conference Proceedings

Should I consider using genomics and IVF?  2019.  Western Dairy Management Conference, Reno, NV (February 26-28). 

Selected Popular Press Articles

Weigel, K. A. 2020. Feed Saved – A Path to Breeding More Efficient Cows? Dairy Business Magazine (December issue).

Quick, A. E., and K. A. Weigel. 2018. Genetics could reduce respiratory disease. Hoard’s Dairyman (November). 

Weigel, K. A. 2018. Reproductive technologies to consider – genomics, IVF. Progressive Dairyman – Canada Edition (June). 

Selected Posters

Prediction of prepartum dry matter intake using linear regression of sensor, blood metabolite, and body size variables in Holstein cows – ADSA 2022 – Malia Caputo

ADSA 2022 Poster Riesgraf

Reyes_Bin Preference Poster 20220608

Reyes_Feeding behavior Poster 20220608

Undergraduate Courses

AN SCI 135: Grand Challenges and Career Opportunities in Animal and Dairy Sciences (1-credit/fall)
Description: Seminar course for first-year students in the Animal Sciences and Dairy Science majors)

AN SCI 375: Current Topics in Companion Animal Research (1-credit/fall)
Description: journal club course for pre-vet students and other students with companion animal interests)

INTER AG 488: Honors in Research Seminar (1-credit)
Description: Seminar course for third-year students in the CALS Honors in Research program)

Advisory Council, Dairy Innovation Hub
Department Chair, Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences
Technical Advisor, National Association of Animal Breeders
Technical Advisor, American Jersey Cattle Association
UW-Madison Steering Committee, Dairy Innovation Hub

Judge John J. Crown Chair in Dairy Genetics, UW-Madison Department of Animal & Dairy Sciences (2022)

Robert G. F. and Hazel T. Spitze Land Grant Faculty Award for Excellence, College of Agricultural & Life Sciences, UW-Madison (2020)

Award for Meritorious Service, American Jersey Cattle Association. (2017)

Lush Award in Animal Breeding and Genetics, American Dairy Science Assn. (2010)

J.S. Donald Farm and Industry Short Course Teaching Award, UW-Madison (2009)

Pound Extension Award, College of Agricultural & Life Sciences, UW-Madison (2008)

Pound Research Award, College of Agricultural & Life Sciences, UW-Madison (2005)

Foundation Scholar Award, American Dairy Science Association (2003)

Agway Inc. Young Scientist Award, American Dairy Science Association (2003)