September 14, 2005 | By: Laura Skillman

Reproduction is the keystone of any commercial cow-calf or seed stock operation, and an upcoming symposium focuses on strategies that producers and their consultants can use to improve the productivity and profitability.

Kentucky, Virginia and Tennessee Cooperative Extension, in conjunction with the North Central Region Bovine Reproduction Task Force, will host Applied Reproductive Strategies in Beef Cattle in Lexington Nov. 1-2 at the Ramada Inn.

As the beef industry puts more emphasis on animal uniformity, known genetic potential and predictable performance, technologies such as estrous synchronization and artificial insemination become increasingly important, according to organizers. In addition, reproductive success can be enhanced by a better understanding of beef cattle reproduction in general as well as the impact of nutrition and management on reproduction.

Symposium speakers include reproductive physiologists and veterinarians from across the country. Kentucky’s program focuses on aspects of reproduction unique to the Eastern United States, such as the impacts of endophyte-infected fescue, moderate herd size and feeds common to the region, said John Hall, Extension beef cattle specialist at Virginia Tech. Similar programs are being offered in Texas and Nevada.

“These meetings are for anyone interested in beef cattle reproduction and estrous synchronization, including producers, veterinarians, AI (artificial insemination) technicians and Extension specialists,” said Sandy Johnson, reproductive physiologist with Kansas State University Research and Extension.

The workshops are designed to improve the understanding of the physiological processes of the estrous cycle, currently available procedures to synchronize estrus and ovulation and the proper application of these systems. They will also focus on improving participants’ understanding of methods to assess male fertility and how it affects the success of AI programs.

Les Anderson, a University of Kentucky Extension beef cattle specialist, said panels featuring producers and practicing veterinarians are an important aspect of the meeting. In addition, the meeting is approved for continuing education credits for veterinarians.

First-day topics will include information on the physiological principles underlying estrous synchronization, a detailed review of current estrous synchronization systems, costs and comparisons, nutrition and reproduction interactions, and dealing with noncycling females, among others.

Day two sessions will include presentations on breeding soundness exams, industry application of technology in male reproduction, embryo transfer, reproductive tract scoring and the use of ultrasound for early pregnancy diagnosis and fetal sexing. 

For more information on Applied Reproductive Strategies for Beef Cattle – East meeting contact Anderson at (859) 257-2856, or Hall, at (540) 231-9153, The fee for the symposium is $150 for both days or $100 for one day. An additional fee will be added for registrations after Sept. 26. Information and registration forms are available on the Internet under the link Applied Reproductive Strategieshere.



Writer: Laura Skillman 270-365-7541 ext. 278

Contact: Les Anderson, 859-257-2856