Many cow-calf producers in Nebraska are in the midst of calving season or will soon be starting. While calving is the primary production activity on the minds of most producers, now is the time to begin planning for the use of estrus synchronization for heifers and cows this spring.
Dr. Rick Funston, UNL Extension Beef Reproductive Specialist has recorded a webinar titled “Estrus Synchronization in Heifers and Cows” that highlights different estrus synchronization protocols and their application.
The Beef Reproduction Task Force, a group of beef specialists from several universities, has a website Applied Reproductive Strategies in Beef Cattle that highlights the application of research to improve and increase the use of estrus synchronization and artificial insemination by the cattle industry.
A tool available from the Beef Reproduction Task Force is the Estrus Synchronization Planner which is an Excel® spreadsheet available to download. This spreadsheet allows producers to select those estrus synchronization protocols that meet their desired goals. The spreadsheet also includes a calendar to assist producers in applying the protocol correctly.
Estrus synchronization has application for both artificial insemination and natural service as a way to improve profitability to the cow-calf enterprise. Utilizing the most effective estrus synchronization protocols can help producers take full advantage of this opportunity.
Source: Aaron Berger, Extension Educator, University of Nebraska