Reproductive Management

Back to basics: Explaining the estrous cycle

A working knowledge of the dairy cow’s estrous cycle and its associated hormones can help you improve your herd’s conception rates and boost reproductive efficiency. FULL STORY »

Ovarian size matters

High variation in dairy cow ovary size and the number of follicles and high quality oocytes in ovaries (referred to as ovarian reserve) impacts ovarian function and fertility. Based on once or twice a day ovarian ultrasonography of cattle, the peak number of follicles growing during different follicular waves of the estrous cycle (referred to as antral follicle count, or AFC) varied seven-fold among animals but was very repeatable within animal regardless of age. FULL STORY »

Prevent a heifer fertility meltdown

Triple-digit temperatures scorched a large portion of the country this summer. Heat stress conditions cause immediate discomfort. However, they also cause long-term consequences on dairy cattle reproductive efficiency. These include a decrease in the length and intensity of estrus, reduced conception rates, decreased embryo survival, reduced pregnancy rates and smaller calf size. FULL STORY »

Managing for reproductive success of dairy cattle during the heat

Cow-cooling is key to managing reproductive challenges due to heat stress. FULL STORY »

An economic comparison of reproductive programs

Suboptimal reproductive performance leads to extended days open, increased culling due to reproductive failure, and decreased milk yield. Many factors influence the reproductive and productive performance of dairy herds, consequently, profitability. Choosing the most effective reproductive protocol for a given herd is a critical managerial decision. FULL STORY »

Register now for the 2011 DCRC annual meeting

The 2011 Dairy Cattle Reproduction Council (DCRC) annual meeting will be held on Nov. 10 - 11 at the Hilton Kansas City Airport in Kansas City, Mo. FULL STORY »

Quantifying nutrition’s influence on reproduction

A dairy cow’s nutrition program has a profound effect on reproductive success. Although poor heat detection, insemination practices, diseases, toxins and other management-related problems can cause declines in reproductive performance, an inadequate ration with nutritional deficiencies and imbalances can be just as detrimental. FULL STORY »

Reproductive protocol proves effective in increasing heifer conception rates

To examine the effectiveness of synchronization protocols in heifers, research at the University of Florida compared the effectiveness of different timed-A.I. protocols in Holstein heifers. FULL STORY »

Lameness has a big influence on reproductive performance

A recent study completed by the University of Liverpool evaluated the effect of lameness, a common chronic stressor, on the reproductive performance of dairy cattle. Not surprisingly, they found that lameness has a serious impact on reproduction. FULL STORY »

Enhancing the fertility of lactating dairy cows

Infertility of the lactating dairy cow continues to be a critical problem limiting profitability and sustainability of dairy farms. Reproductive performance of lactating dairy cows is dependent upon service rate (or estrus detection rate), fertility of the service sire, and maternal fertility. FULL STORY »

Monitor your herd’s pregnancy rate

Pregnancy Rate (PR) is a key performance indicator for reproductive performance in dairy herds. It is defined as the percentage of cows eligible to become pregnant that actually do become pregnant in a given time period. FULL STORY »

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