Panel: Semen E & N 1

Fertility Testing of Bulls

We recommend fertility testing bulls each year before turn-out.  Many factors affect a bulls fertility including age, breed, illness, environmental factors (heat or freezing weather), and nutrition.  A good calf crop one year does not guarantee the same the following year.  This small investment helps ensure a good calf crop.  Breeding soundness exams involve evaluation of scrotal circumference, evaluation of a semen sample, and examination of the genitalia.  We also recommend Trichomonas testing for most bulls.

Trichomonas in cattle

Trichomonas is a venereal disease that is spread by bulls.  One infected cow can infect a bull, and the bull becomes a carrier.  The bull shows no symptoms, but spreads it from cow to cow during the breeding season.  Cows may become bred, but may lose the pregnancy within the first months.  The cow can clear the infection and then gets re-bred.   Herds with Trichomonas often have extended calving seasons and reduced calf crop.  In recent years many states have restricted movement of bulls to control the disease.  This is still an evolving program, so please call us to let us help you comply with regulations.