• Additive genetic effects;
  • Approximate Bayesian inference;
  • MCMC;
  • Multitrait animal model;
  • Quantitative genetics;
  • Wild house sparrow population

Summary In this article, we demonstrate how Gaussian Markov random field properties give large computational benefits and new opportunities for the Bayesian animal model. We make inference by computing the posteriors for important quantitative genetic variables. For the single-trait animal model, a nonsampling-based approximation is presented. For the multitrait model, we set up a robust and fast Markov chain Monte Carlo algorithm. The proposed methodology was used to analyze quantitative genetic properties of morphological traits of a wild house sparrow population. Results for single- and multitrait models were compared.