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General Agriculture

Artificial Insemination Complete Guide

Artificial Insemination (A.I) is the preferred method of introducing superior genes from individuals free of specific disease and thereby improving the production of offspring. AI is also useful for breeding animal outside of their natural breeding, after oestrus has been induced and synchronized by manipulation of the photoperiod or the use of hormones.

It permits the production of adequate quantities of milk and equalized the need for labour through the year. Semen used for out of season breeding can be frozen-thawed or liquid-stored if collected from ducks, rams and cattle held under artificial light in order to simulate the short days of the natural breeding season.

Although higher pregnancy rates may be obtained with trans-abdominal insemination than with cervical insemination the former method may be prohibited due to ethical consideration.

Procedure for Semen Collection

A. The Use of Artificial Vagina

The preparation for the artificial collection is important. The normal pattern of service routine should be adhered to procedure for semen collection

Estrus cows should be put into the service yard.

Bull is retrain as usual and lead up to the estrus cow. This is to lease the bull by allowing it to see and smell the cow and the lead it away so that it does not mount immediately

This usually cause complete creation and libido become sub-hormones.

Artificial Insemination Complete Guide

The usual technique of collection is to have the bull lead up to the cow and operator stand to the right of the cows laid quarter.

The bull noses the cow’s perinium, depresses its back and makes a precaution pumping movement during which there is prostration of the penis and discharge of accessory secretion.

Mounting then occurs and the bull makes some poking movement of the penis.

At the point the operator grape the sheath of the bull with his left hand and direct it to the right of the cow’s lined quarter so that the defected penis enters into the Artificial vagina (AV) which is held in the operators right hand.

Usually when the penis makes contract with the woman lubricated surface of the AV, a vigorous ejaculation, thrust occur.

The AV which is held horizontally is now held upright s that the ejaculation flows into the graduated tube.

In case where the bull fertility is being investigated, attempt should be made to collect at least 3 semen samples.

Bull should be not be shouted at or beaten during semen collection.

All things should be done quietly.

B. The Use of Electro Ejaculator

It is commonly use in practice to collect semen from young bull for semen evaluation on at AI centers.

Electric current for a can battery or from main suppliers or transistor is suitably modified to a 30 or 50 frequency cycle and carried by means of electrode set into a metal probe which are passed into the bull rectum.

The probe are held over the ampullae and stimulations are applied increasing waves by varying the resistance.

At first low voltage and latter voltage of 15-20v and then semen drips would be seen from the protruded penis.

The drip sample from the electrical stimulation gives a greater value of ejaculation

Read Also : The Age when Different Ruminant Animals get to Heat

C. Rectal Massage

The technique involves the introduction of the lubricated hand and arm into the bull’s rectum to locate the seminal vesicle.

Struck the seminal vesicle against the penis.

This cause accessory fluid to drip from the sheath hairs

The ampullas are then found if possible between fingers and thumb.

If this becomes a failure struck toward the urethra may be done

A disadvantage of the message method is that samples obtained are not representative of the true ejaculate.

Advantages of Artificial Insemination (AI)

AI is used several reasons. There include:

It spread more widely the merits of a top quality sire i.e. more females can be inseminated in a wide area with semen from a proven sire without the sire moving from one place to another.

AI allows for the elimination of the cost and risk of maintaining a sire for a small herd or flock.

This permits the use of a desirable but proven quality sire.

Presents the spread of certain reproductive disease.

Permits the easier use of exotic breed bulls which is otherwise difficult to maintain in a harsh environment.

Improve record keeping for performance tenting since exact dates of conception can be known.

It allows for a good co-ordination with estrus synchronization program.

It helps in eliminating size differences between sire and dams.

Permits the use semen from sire several year’s even they might have been dead. And this can help in various research programs.

Sterility in bull can be easily be detected.

It saves time to carry out AI than under natural mating.

Disadvantages of Artificial Insemination (AI)

It requires a trained personal.

The equipment to be used be costly or even unable to the local famers.

The behaviors of indigenous animals especially cattle makes it difficult to practice AI. Heat detection is difficult and it is not easy for the indigenous bulls to mount or ejaculate by means of artificial vagina.

The poor infrastructural facilities available makes it difficult to supply or perform AI.

The extensive use of AI tends to reduce the market for bulls.

When poor or dirty equipment are used can be a source of disease or infections injuries to the dams.

If a female is inseminated wrongly when it is not in estrus, this can lead to permanent sterility or lead to disease called matritis or if pregnant can lead to abortion, feotal death or maternal illness.

In the event of dilatrous trial in a bull being used for AI, such a trait becomes widely spread, which will take time for climate.

Preparation of Slide for Estimating Sperm Mortality

All surface that will come into contact with semen should be clean and sterile this include the glass slide, the cover glass and the glass rod.


The first step to take is to warm the slide but this should be should be done carefully not to get hot.

Place one drop of warm (380C physiological saline 0.9g NaCl in 100mls distilled water) or sodium citrate buffer (Na3C6H7.2H2O) on the pre warm slide.

Invert tube of raw semen gently 2 or 3 times of place a very small amount of semen in saline or citrate buffer. If semen has been diluted, there will be no need for the use of this saline or citrate buffer.

Diluents or Extenders for Liquid Semen

If desired or required, fresh semen can be successfully used for insemination within 24 hours of collection without dilution phial containing it is corked and stored in a beaker of water at temperature before transferring it to refrigerator at about 40C for satisfactorily used in AI.

However, semen must be diluted at least 4 times its volume of diluents or extenders and its fertility must be retained at least 4 days.

For this purpose special diluent or extenders has been device in addition to dilution provides a buffer to maintained a constant PH and nutrient and antibiotics with sulphonamides. The diluent which have more extensively used are:

A. Egg Yolk citrate diluent Procedure

Dissolve 2.9g of crystalline sodium citrate dehydrated in 180 double distilled water over glass.

Wash fresh eggs obtained from a disease free flock, sack them in 70% alcohol you 5 minute and then dry them before braking shall.

Using a septic precaution, separate the egg yolk from albumen as completely as possible puncture the yolk membrane and collect the yolk from a stainless glass container.

To mix 100mls of diluents mix 20mls of egg yolk and 80mls of sodium citrate buffer solution.

Some workers use higher proportion of yolk to citrate than the 1:4 proportion up to equal parts of the 2 ingredients.

B. Boiled skimmed milk diluent Procedure

It requires adequate heating of milk to destroy a factor known as lactanin which is toxic to sperm.

It is done by first obtaining fresh homogenized pasteuralised milk or fresh pasteuralised milk (skimmed) from a reliable creamery of dairy plants.

You should avoid fresh skimmed milk fortified with milk solid. Homogenized milk containing vitamin D or activated ergosterol is however, satisfactorily.

Using an accurate thermometer heat the milk to 920 – 950C and hold it this temperature for 10mins in the top portion of covered glass double boilers or in a covered vessels placed directly on a heated plate.

Cool the milk to room temperature and add required level of antibiotics and store at 50C until ready for use. It is usually prepared a day before use.

C. Milk glycerol diluent


Diluent the semen to one half the final disease perm concentration with fresh previously heated and cooled skim milk or homogenized milk containing antibiotics.

Cooled partially diluted semen slowly to 50C over a period of 4 hours.

Add an equal volume of cooled milk diluent containing 20% glycerol by volume for best sperm availability, the milk glycerol fraction must be added gradually. You can do the addition as follows:-

Add step wise 20, 30 and 50% of the milk at 10min interval.

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You can add in 3 equal volume in 10min interval.

Add drop wise from a separatory funnel continuously over a period of 30min.

The final concentration of glycerol is now 10% and diluent is ready for pouring into test tubes and packaging for shipment. You do not need to wait for equilibration.

Techniques of heat detection/gadgets

Different signs are studied carefully for detection of heat. Heat detection aids are very important tools for efficient reproductive management if used in combination with expert eye.

Cows with detector combination with expert eye. Cows with detector (KaMaR) plus CHALK marking on tail were more efficient than detector alone. Visual observation with tail paint is 98 % efficient as compared to heat watch alone i.e. 91 %.

The secondary signs of heat include;

Frequent urination, chin resting, back rubbing, walking along fences, loss of appetite and sudden drop in milk production.

Other supportive sign include licking, sniffing, head lift up, lip curling, and flehman’s reaction (up curling of lips by female or male after touching the genitalia of raged animal).

Willingness to amount other cows, even though neither cows may be willing to stand for the mount

Roughened tail head or mud on the rump, which is evidence that other animals have tried to mount her.

Restlessness which may be indicative of a cow about to exhibit heat (cows in pre-heat may bawl more than usual, head-butt the face, sniff or lick other cattle)

Clear stringy mucus discharge which may be hanging from the vulva or meared on the pin-bones or rump of a cow about to have estrus or one already in estrus.

Bloody mucus often appears 2-3 days after entrus has occurred and should be recorded in order to closely watch for heat in 17-21 days.

Physical sign of estrus include

The tumefaction of vulva,

Reddening of vulva (bright cherry pink color),

Excess mucus discharge and tone in uterus.

Closeness in animals coming into heat usually congregates and form small groups of three to five animals called sexually active group (SAG). It is easy to detect heat if sexually active group exist in herd.

Heat detection gadgets

Vaginal pH;

Vaginal smear;

Measurement of vaginal conductivity using probe;

Fern pattern of cervical mucus discharge;

Endometrial biopsy;

Cervical mucus glucose content:

Uterine tone;

Change in parlor behavior;

Milk yield fluctuation;

Temperature measurement;

Heat expectancy charts;

Tail painting;

Use of androgenized cow;

Chin ball device;

Heat expectancy charts;

Gomer bulls;

Bio stimulation

Pressure sensitive KaMaR or BeaCon heat detector;

Electronic heat mount detector;

Heat patch with visible colour change;

Pedometer and activity meters;

Video camera and recording using CCTV;

Electronic odour detector;

Milk progesterone Detection;

Heat detection by 17β-estradiol and P4 in milk;

Infra-red spectroscopy and magnetic resonance spectra;

Synchronization of estrus.

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Benadine Nonye is an agricultural consultant and a writer with several years of professional experience in the agriculture industry. - National Diploma in Agricultural Technology - Bachelor's Degree in Agricultural Science - Master's Degree in Science Education - PhD Student in Agricultural Economics and Environmental Policy... Visit My Websites On: 1. - Your Comprehensive Practical Agricultural Knowledge and Farmer’s Guide Website! 2. - For Effective Environmental Management through Proper Waste Management and Recycling Practices! Join Me On: Twitter: @benadinenonye - Instagram: benadinenonye - LinkedIn: benadinenonye - YouTube: Agric4Profits TV and WealthInWastes TV - Pinterest: BenadineNonye4u - Facebook: BenadineNonye

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