The process of heat synchronisation is simply the process of manipulating the oestrus cycle of the cow.
This practice is implemented in order to better manage the timing of breeding, according to Professor David Kenny, Teagasc Grange.
Kenny says: “The normal oestrus of a cow in interrupted by the use of synthetic hormones which mimic the natural hormones that the animal produces.”
“In addition, heat can also be induced in cows that are still anoestrus. However, the resulting pregnancy rates will not be as a high as for cows that have already resumed cyclicity.”
In this video, Professor Kenny says the reasons for using synchronisation are as follows:
- Use of genetically superior bulls through AI;
- Shorten the breeding season and compact the calving season;
- All cows can be bred on a pre-determined day;
- Need for natural service bulls can be reduced;
- Induce heat in anoestrus cows.
- Use a progesterone releasing device, such as a PRID or a CIDR;
- This is placed in the cow’s vagina for a period of 7 days;
- GnRH is administered at the start of the programme;
- Prostaglandin is administered at the removal of the device;
- Cows can be bred 72 hours after the removal of the progesterone device along with another injection of GnRH.
All drugs needed for synchronisation are prescription drugs.
The average cost of the procedure ranges from €22-€32 per animal. Added with an AI cost of €25-€30, the average cost for synchronising and inseminating a cow ranges from €47 to €62.
Video source: Teagasc YouTube