Animals (Basel) 2019 Jul 19;9(7). Epub 2019 Jul 19.
Institute of Animal Breeding, Wrocław University Of Environmental and Life Sciences, Chełmońskiego 38C, 51-630 Wrocław, Poland.
The purpose of this review was to analyze factors affecting the popularity of artificial insemination of mares in Europe in the context of sperm quality. Taking into account the prices of stallion semen on the world market, efficiency is important for the profitability of its use in artificial insemination programs in Europe. To increase the efficiency of a semen insemination facility, it is necessary to correctly and objectively assess the quality of semen. The available range of tools allows an effective evaluation of the potential fertility of a stallion. For several years, artificial insemination programs in Europe have been gaining popularity. However, the frequency of chilled or frozen semen use is still quite low. This is mainly due to the common, negative opinion about the effectiveness of the use of packaged insemination doses as opposed to natural insemination. Unfortunately, the quality of the semen offered often deviates from expectations, which results in unsatisfactory (and therefore unprofitable) pregnancy rates. This review presents the popularity structure of chilled and frozen semen use in European horse breeding as well as the current state of research on the effectiveness of semen production technology. It is shown that the popularity of using chilled semen in the artificial insemination of mares in Europe has been gradually increasing in the group of sport mares, while in the group of breeding mares, in recent years, frozen semen has been gaining popularity. In the remaining group of mares (not classified as sport or breeding), insemination with chilled semen has been dominant.