Artificial Insemination

Artifical insemination (AI) is the process where insemination takes place by placement of semen into the uterus of mares at a time close to ovulation.  Mares tend to be in season for about 5 to 7 days, but only ovulate at the end of that period.  Some semen can last for several days, so insemination towards the end of the oestrus period will ensure a reasonable chance of conception.  In fertile mares with fertile stallions it is easy to achieve good results with some simple input.  But when mares are subfertile or we are dealing with stallions of reduced fertility, the situation does become more complex.  Anyone who says that AI is easy all the time, hasn't done enough of it!

We tend to get great results at the Gippsland Equine Hospital as we make careful and thorough examinations of mares and optimise fertility by adjusting treatments on an individual basis.  We are also very careful to ensure the timing of insemination maximises the chance of fertilisation of the egg.  In the case of chilled semen transported overnight, we make sure the semen is placed deep int he uterus near the end of the uterus adjacent to the ovary, to place the sperm as close as possible to the ovulating egg.  When we use frozen semen, we scan the mare using an ultrasound to monitor the when ovulation occurs so we can inseminate as close as possible to this time to maximise the chance of conception.  In many cases that means scanning and inseminating in the middle of the night!

Fresh/Chilled Semen

Semen can be stored cool for several days if it is processed correctly.  It needs to be collected in as clean a manner as possible and mixed with an appropriate semen extender.  If the semen is then chilled in a controlled manner, it can generally be shipped anywhere in Australia or New Zealand for insemination the following day.  We send and receive semen from across Australia.  Some semen we receive is of good quality, while others is of bad quality.  The semen quality is usually a result of the technicians that handle it.  Most veterinary centres across the country that do the job do it well.  Some stallion owners will do it themselves, but a word of warning... many do it badly.  So before you select your stallion, please consider how and by whom the semen is collected and processed.  Please contact us if you have any concerns.

Frozen Semen

Most frozen semen has been collected and processed by a trained veterinarian and or technician.  The process of collecting and processing semen for freezing is complex and requires a great attention to detail.  Most frozen semen we receive is of good quality, but stallions do vary in the performance of their semen once it is frozen.  We acknowledge the investment made by mare owners when they obtain frozen semen, and we make sure we get the mare's reproductive tract in the best possible condition for conception to occur.  The optimum time for insemination of frozen semen is within four hours of ovulation.  The optimum method of delivery of frozen semen is by deep insemination to the tip of the uterus where the oviduct starts, near where the egg will be released from the ovary.  We have found that we get great results inseminating mares to frozen semen because we pay attention to detail and make sure the timing insemination and placement of the semen is optimal.  This may mean we inseminate mares in the middle of the night!  

One main advantage of using frozen semen is that we make sure we have it on hand prior to your mare coming into season.  Therefore we will not be delayed by postage or other factors relating to semen collection or delivery.

Contact us

If you want further information regarding AI in your mare.  Please contact Peter on 03 51471008

Sale Veterinary centre

  • Address: 262 York Street, Sale
  • Telephone: (03)5144 3100
  • Fax: (03)5144 5968
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Gippsland Equine Hospital

  • Address: 31 Beet Road, Maffra
  • Telephone: (03)5147 1008
  • Fax: (03)5141 1439
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