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AI yourself?

Posted: Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:37 am
by MRRherefords
We have been using Select Sires as our ai techs for the last few years, but due to the number of Dairy farms closing around us they are shutting down our area. We are considering taking a class and learning how to ai ourselves. I was wondering how many on here did their own ai'ing and how much difference if any you saw compared to using a tech in success rates. Thanks.

Re: AI yourself?

Posted: Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:46 am
by Bright Raven
I have 80 acres. Excellent pasture. I maintain 20 mature cows and replace culled cows with my own heifers. In addition, I sell AI bred heifers.

I am 100 % AI. There is not a breeding bull on my property. I have one breeding season - Thanksgiving until end of January. That means I calve September/October. I average just above a 75 % conception rate on FIRST service. Using natural observed heats. I get all my cows bred. No exceptions.

I have never used a technician. I took the SS training under Kenley Conner. It was excellent.

I do not want to do more than 20 to 25 cows a year. Plus, I breed about 5 to 6 heifers that I sell as breds.

Re: AI yourself?

Posted: Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:23 am
by MRRherefords
Bright Raven wrote:I have 80 acres. Excellent pasture. I maintain 20 mature cows and replace culled cows with my own heifers. In addition, I sell AI bred heifers.

I am 100 % AI. There is not a breeding bull on my property. I have one breeding season - Thanksgiving until end of January. That means I calve September/October. I average just above a 75 % conception rate on FIRST service. Using natural observed heats. I get all my cows bred. No exceptions.

I have never used a technician. I took the SS training under Kenley Conner. It was excellent.

I do not want to do more than 20 to 25 cows a year. Plus, I breed about 5 to 6 heifers that I sell as breds.

Thanks Ron. I do plan on taking a class from Select.

Re: AI yourself?

Posted: Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:43 pm
by millstreaminn
I also took the class from Sire Power years ago. I used to AI my own dairy cattle and did my beef for the first year. With only 10 animals to breed each year, it cost more to maintain the semen tank than it was worth. I still have a Select Sire tech in the area and use him on all my cows.

Re: AI yourself?

Posted: Sun Aug 12, 2018 9:02 am
by farmerjan
We mostly use bulls due to having many far off pastures that we rent. But, I have been doing some AI for over 30 years. It is getting expensive to maintain a tank, but it sure gives you choices on what to use. I breed on natural heats and average60% on first service, but I only do about 10-15 a year if that. I will breed twice then they go with a bull. I did relief breeding for Select for 15 years so our tech could have a day off now and then. Mostly all dairy farms, but alot of small places where they have a couple cows, sometimes a family cow to milk etc.
It is as much catching the cow in heat at the right time as anything. Take the course. But maybe if there is any other beef farm around that is doing it, they might want to go in with you or they might be breeding their own and can come do yours as an "independent do a favor" type thing. Some people just have a better feel for it than others, but practice is what really helps.