SEMEN EVALUATION Is it Really Necessary?

 Semen evaluation is done after the stallion is collected but before the semen is packaged for shipping.   It involves determining sperm count, progressive motility (% live sperm), and concentration. These numbers are necessary if you are going to be properly shipping semen. To prepare the semen for shipment a calculation is done to determine the best amount of extender to add to the raw semen. The extender is what make it possible for the semen to stay alive long enough to ship. Put too little extender, and the sperm have a harder time surviving. Put too much extender and you could dilute it beyond 1 billion progressively motile sperm per dose or make the concentration too weak.

Very often in the past it has been standard practice to evaluate semen at the beginning of the season and maybe a few times during the season. The rest of the year the semen was prepared based on the findings of those evaluations. The problem with this method is the stallionís semen can change daily and you would be unaware of it. The amount of extender added last week may not be correct for this week. You may be risking shipping substandard semen.

For this reason alone I recommend that whenever you will be shipping the semen, you also have it evaluated. This will insure you are doing the best possible job for the mare owner. And thatís exactly what owning a breeding stallion is Ė a job.


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