Your breeding program is the foundation for your herd, often determining overall productivity and profitability for your entire operation. Minimizing postpartum interval, proper nutrition and body condition scoring play important roles in keeping your animals bred. Maintaining your current breeding herd by decreasing the rate of replacement females allows you to maximize profitability from your own animals.
Pregnancy in cattle is most frequently diagnosed via rectal palpation or ultrasonography. We can utilize advanced diagnostics such as uterine cytology to work with problem breeders, providing the best quality reproductive care for your cattle. Programs using implants and injectable hormones are available for synchronization.
Bull Breeding Soundness
One of the most valuable and often under utilized services available to producers is the bull breeding soundness exam (BSE). A BSE allows us to assess a bull's potential breeding fitness. Ideally this would be performed well in advance of the breeding season.
Areas evaluated include:
- Scrotal size, shape, and consistency
- Sperm motility
- Sperm morphology
- Penis shape and size
- Feet and leg soundness
- Body condition
Bulls make up half of the breeding herd and should be managed as carefully as the cow herd to insure a brief and productive calving season.
Although it is generally agreed that weight is the most important measurable trait affecting calving difficulty, there is evidence that the size and shape of the pelvis also has an effect on a heifer’s ability to calve. Ratios have been developed that are used to estimate deliverable calf size. Divide total pelvic area prior to breeding by a ratio that is based on age and weight to estimate the amount of birth weight a heifer could accommodate as a 2-year-old without substantial difficulty.
Some research sources report a 0.60 genetic correlation between male and female pelvic area. This indicates selection for pelvic size in bulls should result in increased pelvic size of daughter offspring. Hip height, frame score, and scrotal circumference were positively correlated with pelvic size.