Technological options and approaches to improve supply of desirable animal genetic material: IPMS Experience Market-oriented Smallholder Development Azage Tegegne IPMS Experience Sharing Workshop June 2 - 3, 2011
Background Increasing urbanization Increasing income Increasing demand for meat, milk and milk products Excellent pre-conditions GoE– favourable enabling environment, GTP, AGP, LGP Suitable agro-ecology Large livestock population Tradition of livestock keeping Culture of consumption of animal products Large labour force Huge market opportunity, etc
But, hindered by Weak AI delivery system and low pregnancy rates Inbreeding?? High prices for improved dairy animals About 50% - male calves in dairy system Low level of promotion of indigenous breeds Weak targeted technological interventions
Reproductive cycle Involution/breeding season Critical 75-90 days Parturition Conception Gestation 280 days
Some technological options Conventional artificial insemination (AI) Hormonal oestrus synchronization plus AI Sexed semen Sex fixer Embryo transfer and sexed embryos In-vitro fertilization plus sexed semen
Estrus response - about 60-65% of treated herd
Pregnancy rate to AI – about 50% of responding cows/heifers
Why synchronize? - Ethiopian context To produce large number and uniform animals of desired germplasm (kick start) To match calving with feed availability and market demand for dairy and meat To control heat period and allow more accurate AI service To improve the effectiveness and efficiency of AI service (AI staff deal year round; no AI in rural areas (butter and/or meat) Possibility of avoiding milk production during fasting season
Options to improve use of human resource for AI services Use of Regional/Zonal mobile teams; AI large numbers of animals in a two weeks period through: Community mobilization to bring animals with the desired characteristics to a central point with good animal handling facility Use of hormonal synchronization and subsequent inseminationwithin 2-5 days of treatment In a dairy system, use of sexed semen or sex fixer to increase the number of female
Performance of existing AI system (National data; Dessalegn et al., 2010) One AI technician inseminates about 300 animals per year Pregnancy rate to first AI is about 27% = 81 calves/year 50% female = 41 calves/year
Mobile teams - preliminary data from Tigray and SNNPR Oestrus response to hormonal treatment = 90% Two AI technicians working in as a team can inseminate about 200 synchronized cows in a 2 week period – 100 cows/AI technician Result of pregnancy testing - 60% (due to increased precision and effectiveness of AI)
Assumptions on annual output of a mobile team Two person team work 40 weeks in 10 villages/year (2 weeks/village) synchronize & inseminate 200 cows/village = 2000 cows 1000 cows/AI technician Pregnancy rate of 60% = 600 calves/AI technician Use of sex fixer/sexed semen = 90% female Number of female calves per AI technician = 540/year
Applying this to the proposed plan - Oromia Existing plan Sixty (60) Woredas/year involving 60 technicians 300 AI x 60 technician = 18,000 AI/year 50% pregnancy rate = 9,000 (improved performance) 50% female calves = 4,500 female calves/year Alternative approach This would result in: 60 technicians x 540 female calves = 32,400 calves/year (7.2 times higher)
Management factors affecting conception Animal handling facility A.I. technicians Body condition score, health and cyclicity of cows/heifers Semen quality and handling techniques Heat detection accuracy and time of insemination Heat stress
Just do the right thing and do it right – No silver bullet!!
Attempts to solve the problem IPMS Experience Tigray, Amhara, SNNPR
Poor animal handling facility – causes stress, is high risk, creates inefficiency!!
Be prepared for on the spot insemination and treatment of some sick animals
Exhausted…….some break! Carry enough water and some food...
Beef System – Metema, Amhara Good export market – live animals & meat High cattle population and large holdings Large underutilized feed resource Mainly highland zebu brought with settlers Mismatch between genotype and environment High environmental stress, particularly heat Lower fertility and calving rate High pre-weaning calf mortality Slower growth rate, low market weight Lower milk production
Key lessons Capacity building – multidisciplinary regional teams Proper Planning – commodity development Ensure necessary equipment and supplies for the team and safe and efficient field operation Leadership - team formation, clear roles and responsibilities Awareness creation and community mobilization Facilities – animals handling, lab, equipment, etc Technical, organizational & institutional arrangements The technology is a means not an end by itself!! Synchronization ≠ milk or meat!!!
Potential for beef production and development using Boran cattle
Sperm sexing technology First commercial sexed semen 1999. Flow cytometersare used to sort female sperm cells from the male sperm cells. The female (X bearing chromosome) contains 3.8% more DNA than the male (Y bearing chromosome). It is this difference in DNA content that is detected by the sensors when the sperm cells pass by a laser beam, one at a time in a fluid stream.
On average sexed semen straw contains over 90% female sperm cells In dairy system, almost doubles the number of heifer calves produced Sex fixer with active constituent blocks the H-Y antibody receptor site on ovum; effectively blocking chance of Y chromosome from binding with ovum
Mid to long-term – ET and in-vitro fertilization
Training EIAR researchers – in-vitro fertilization technique