ARTIFICIAL INSEMINATION IN THE MARE AT NERRC
Semen collection and insemination techniques have been refined to make Artificial Insemination (AI) an excellent reproductive choice providing an advantageous option for many breeders.
Some of the advantages of AI are to eliminate transporting a horse for breeding, reduce the risk of sexually transmitted diseases, eliminate breeding accidents and allows a stallion to impregnate a much larger number of mares than would be possible by live cover.
Once equine semen is collected from a stallion, it can be used fresh, cooled, or frozen. The success of the AI process is determined by, amongst other factors, the optimal timing for the insemination, the mare reproductive health and the semen quality and its ability to undergo cooling or freezing processes.
AI occurs immediately after semen collection on the mare’s optimal stage of the cycle. The mare will be examined by our reproductive veterinarians to ensure she ovulates within a maximum of 48hs after AI. Various drugs can be administered to induce ovulation
At Newcastle Equine Rehabilitation and Reproduction Centre at Luskintyre, we offer to stand the on farm or receive the stallion for a walk-in semen collection.
Cooled semen is mixed with an extender (containing nutrients for sperm and antibiotics), properly packaged and transported in an insulated container to the mare’s location. A key aspect is how the particular stallion’s semen handles being cooled because some semen retains its quality for a longer time than samples from other stallions. Thus, the shipment should be scheduled based on this key factor (stallions with a good or poor cooled semen record) to arrive guaranteed same-day delivery or within 24 hs of being collected (overnight shipment). AI is expected to occur within 24 hs of semen collection being performed. Various drugs can be administered the mare which can induce ovulation and time this correctly.
For stallions, our facility at Luskintyre is fully equipped to perform semen collection and shipment to wherever the mare is located. For mares, both our facilities at NEC and NERRC are set up for cooled semen AI. Our experienced reproductive vets will examine the mare, request semen from the stallion owner/agent and coordinate to perform the AI mare’s optimal stage of the cycle. For mares with difficult or poor breeding history, Dr Agustin Ruiz, who is American Board certified in equine reproduction (Theriogenology), can investigate any underlying cause and recommend a breeding program for any mare with difficulties.
Frozen semen can be stored indefinitely retaining its quality if properly processed and stored. Similar to cooled semen, frozen semen retains its qualities better for some stallions than for others. Once located in our facilities, frozen semen is thawed and the mare is inseminated just before or shortly after ovulation, an event that needs to be verified by repeated ultrasound scans of the ovaries by one of our experienced reproductive vets.
5 steps for a successful AI program for your mare
- Choose the right mare by having your vet examining her for reproductive soundness before breeding.
- Choose a stallion and arrange a contract with the stallion owner / agent:
- Find out when and where the stallion will be available for collection / transport of chilled semen or available for insemination using fresh semen.
- Choose the right semen presentation:
- If using frozen semen – make sure that the semen arrives at the breeding centre BEFORE you send your mare.
- Contact us to discuss about breeding contracts (available for frozen, cooled and fresh AI)
- Set up an appointment with one of our experienced reproductive veterinarians to get started!! J
Do you need further assessment or have any questions about AI?? We are available for your questions!! Ring as at (02) 4927 6135 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org