The center offers a full line of stallion reproductive services which allow owners to utilize their stallions in fresh, cooled/shipped, or frozen semen programs.
The Stallion facilities at PSERC were designed with strict considerations given to safety and with the flexibility to meet the needs of the individual stallion. Stallions are stabled in well-ventilated 16 x 16 ft. stalls. Daily turnout is available and encouraged. Stallions are turned out in acre-sized paddocks specifically designed and constructed for their safe confinement. Semen collections are performed in our large breeding shed designed with stallion and personnel safety as the primary concern. All collections are performed following protocols that are designed with the goal of obtaining the highest quality ejaculate possible.
After the semen is collected it is immediately evaluated and processed for the desired purpose. Evaluations are performed using state of the art equipment and protocols in the industry. For example, sperm motility values are determined via computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA) providing an objective evaluation that provides a permanent, accurate record of semen quality from each ejaculate processed at PSERC. Sperm counts are performed with the use of a ChemoTec Nucleocounter. which is recognized as the most accurate system for concentration and viability values in the industry.
Stallion Services include:
This examination often referred to as a BSE (breeding soundness exam), has two purposes. It is designed to predict potential fertility of a stallion. This is important for new stallions entering a breeding program and is also valuable for stallions that are looking to significantly increase their book. The other major purpose of a fertility evaluation is to diagnose fertility issues of stallions with existing problems. Infertility can have various causes and can occur in stallions used for cooled shipped semen or live cover. Often a diagnosis can lead to treatment or management changes which result in increased pregnancy rates.
Most commonly the stallions we see are new stallions with no previous sexual experience. This training may involve teaching him to mount a mare safely in the breeding shed for live cover or mounting a phantom for collection. We are presented with experienced stallions that exhibit behavioral issues as well and need ‘retraining’ to become proficient breeders again.
An initial cooled semen evaluation is recommended for all stallions being offered for cooled shipped semen. This evaluation will determine if the stallion’s semen is of acceptable quality at 24 and 48 hours post collection. It will also determine which semen extender produces the best results for this particular stallion and if more extraordinary measures must be taken in processing this semen to enhance the fertility of that semen. The information obtained in a cooled semen evaluation will provide both stallion and mare owners with the comfort of knowing that they should expect success.
The cooled semen shipment program is designed to accommodate all stallion owners whether it be those with a heavy book and large volume of mares or a those with a smaller book and even those with the occasional mare. Stallion owners have the choice of hauling their horses in and out for semen collection or boarding with us for the season. Some stallions even reside at PSERC permanently.
PSERC can communicate with the mare owner directly to arrange delivery and to collect payment making the management of the stallion’s season simpler. Shipments can be transported in an Equitainer or a disposable box by FedEx, UPS, Courier or counter to counter.
PSERC offers stallion owners a complete frozen semen program from collection and freezing, through storage, to final distribution. As a member of the Select Breeders Service Affiliate Network, PSERC is able to link stallion owners with the leading equine frozen semen program in the industry. The Select Breeders Services Network is a group of affiliated laboratories throughout the United States, Europe, Australia and Central America. This network shares a commitment to provide the highest level of customer service, quality control, and state of the art technology to our clients. The affiliation with Select Breeders Service not only provides proven freezing protocols, but also incorporates a unique quality control program that provides objective verification of the quality of the doses produced.
Upon arrival at PSERC, stallions that are not currently on a regular collection/breeding schedule will require depletion collections to be performed prior to the test freeze. Once the stallion is properly prepared, the stallion is collected and a test freeze is performed utilizing several different freezing protocols. The protocols will then go through a thorough post thaw analysis to determine the best freezing protocol for the individual stallion. All freezes conducted by PSERC are performed using computerized programmable cell freezers, which provide a level of quality and consistency that vapor freezing cannot match. Quality control is further enhanced using computerized sperm motility analysis. This objective evaluation provides a permanent, accurate record of the post-thaw semen quality from each ejaculate of frozen semen.
To retain viability frozen semen must be properly maintained. At PSERC, frozen semen is maintained in numerous state of the art, high capacity cryogenic containers. The liquid level of all tanks is monitored weekly and nitrogen added as needed. Monitoring nitrogen evaporation rates allows us to detect in advance a tank that is losing holding time and replace it before any of the valuable semen it contains is in jeopardy. These and other safety measures allow PSERC to minimize the possibility of semen loss due to tank failure.
The distribution program is designed with both stallion and mare owner in mind. Once the stallion owner authorizes the shipment, the PSERC staff handles the rest. We can ship the same day an authorization is received with delivery the next day to the mare owner if needed. Each shipment includes detailed instructions for thawing and handling the frozen semen. Our technical staff is also available for consultation with receiving veterinarians or mare owners.
PSERC also facilitates the exportation of frozen semen for stallion owners. The facility is USDA approved for the production, storage and distribution of export qualified frozen semen. Once the semen is collected and frozen, our staff coordinates with the stallion owner to insure the required testing is completed. We then work with experienced customs brokers to make the exportation timely and error-free.