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Animal Reproductive Cycles
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Animal Reproductive Cycles

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This presentation outlines the estrus cycle of livestock animals. It also outlines common ages of puberty in livestock animals.

This presentation outlines the estrus cycle of livestock animals. It also outlines common ages of puberty in livestock animals.


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  • 1. Estrus and Menstruation
  • 2.
    • Estrus – Time of ovulation and sexual receptivity in most mammals; known as heat
    • Menstruation – the shedding of the thickened lining of the uterus in humans and some primates
    • Animals in estrus mate whenever with whomever when in estrus vs. animals with a menstrual cycle choose when and with whom to mate.
  • 3.
    • Cows 21 days
    • Pigs 21 days
    • Mares 21 days
    • Ewes 16 days
  • 4.
    • The estrus cycle is the period of days between coming into “heat”
    • “ Heat” is the term used to describe estrus or sexual receptivity in livestock
    • Estrus is brought on by a drop in progesterone levels and an increase in estrogen levels
  • 5.
    • Cows 12-24 hrs
    • Pigs 24-36 hrs
    • Mares 4 days
    • Ewes 24 hrs
  • 6.
    • period following estrus
    • when cattle and goats ovulate
    • LH is released when the follicle ruptures and stimulates the remaining follicle tissue to form the Corpus Luteum
    • Corpus Luteum produces progesterone which maintains pregnancy
  • 7.
    • period when the system assumes pregnancy
    • longest phase of estrus cycle
  • 8.
    • If pregnancy is not established the CL begins to regress
    • Progesterone levels drop
    • The body prepares for estrus again
  • 9.
    • Day 1 – first day of menstruation
    • Day 5 – Last day of menstruation
    • Day 14 – Ovulation
    • ** Unpredictability of human body
  • 10.  
  • 11.  
  • 12.
    • Time at which animals reach a level of sexual maturity that will sustain reproduction
    • Not best time to breed animal, not fully mature
  • 13.
    • Cows 1-1½ years
    • Pigs 5-10 mo
    • Horses 1½-2 years
  • 14.
    • Cows 2-2½ years
    • Pigs 1-1½ years
    • Horses 2½-3 years