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 4. Breeding and Genetics
 New herdsire breedings
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mcmanusf

30 Posts

Posted - 08/25/2015 :  3:32:22 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi,

We have a two year old herdsire that has started working this summer. How many breedings should we let him have with a female? I'm conscious of the fact that she can be hurt. Is 4 or5 over a season the max? It really wouldn't matter if there were no cria next year but he was a supreme champion this year and we were advised to use him asap to improve our herd.

Thanks

Fiona

Fiona McManus
Tinryland Alpacas
Carlow
Ireland

renfarms

469 Posts

Posted - 08/25/2015 :  7:44:05 PM  Show Profile  Visit renfarms's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Fiona,
If you have bred a female 4 or 5 times within a few months and she is still not pregnant, there may or may not be something going wrong.

It could either have something to do with her, with him, or how you are going about doing your breeding.

A few questions:
How old is your female?
How old is your male?
What is the breeding history on each of them - has either produced offspring yet?
Do you behavior test the female prior to introducing her to the male?
Do you just turn them loose together in the pasture to breed?
Do you hand breed - meaning do you only bring them together in a supervised breeding, and then separate them?
Do you behavior test the female 7 days post breeding?
Do you have a vet nearby who can do a speculum exam and/or an ultrasound on your female to check for possible problems, such as an uterine infection or an intact hymen or small-sized reproductive organs (uterus, ovaries)?
Have you had very hot temperatures during this time?
A male whose testicles get too hot can become either temporarily or permanently sterile. During hot temps it's generally better to breed in the morning or evening to avoid the worst heat of the day.

If I can get these questions answered, I can begin to help you "drill down" on what the more likely explanations for her not becoming pregnant are.

Thanks,
Bill

Bill and Louise Goebel
Renaissance Farms
McArthur, Ohio 45651
(740) 596-1468
bill@renfarmsohio.com
www.renfarmsohio.com
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renfarms

469 Posts

Posted - 08/26/2015 :  08:55:55 AM  Show Profile  Visit renfarms's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Fiona,
In addition to the questions I posed, let me add that it is not at all unusual for a 2-year old male alpaca to not quite be potent enough yet to successfully impregnate a female. In many cases it can take until the male is 3, and in some instances, even 4 years old.

In that case the only thing that may be going "wrong" is that the male is not yet fertile.

Bill

Bill and Louise Goebel
Renaissance Farms
McArthur, Ohio 45651
(740) 596-1468
bill@renfarmsohio.com
www.renfarmsohio.com
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mcmanusf

30 Posts

Posted - 08/26/2015 :  11:21:00 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Bill,

Perhaps he is just not ready. At the start he couldn't get the girls to sit down for him. Now they will. He's making all the right noises but maybe he's just not fertile. Some of the girls were maidens and some were proven and I checked them after 6 days but not religiously because I didn't fancy sitting outside in the rain. We've had a lot of rain this summer. If I really want cria I could use the older boy. It's just the this new boy is soooo nice that I wanted to use him this year. Maybe I should just be patient.

Thanks again

Fiona

Fiona McManus
Tinryland Alpacas
Carlow
Ireland
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Kate

318 Posts

Posted - 08/27/2015 :  11:18:49 AM  Show Profile  Visit Kate's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi Fiona,
Young males have to break down an adhesion that prevents the penis from extracting from the sheath, and that may take several breedings/ and or time until he is able to fully extend his penis. If you're doing hand breedings and assisting, you can carefully get up close and observe whether he's fully able to extend yet.
If not, there's no real risk to the female with attempted breedings.
If he is in working order, and doesn't settle a female next year, I would have a sperm count done. Your get can get a swab from the dam, immediately post-breeding, and put the sample on a slide under a microscope - I've done it too... Had to send a boy back after spending a year or two breeding him to my girls- he didn't have viable sperm :-/
But that's not the norm, and hopefully he will be producing beautiful babies in no time!

Kate McKelvie
Alpacas of Sunset Fields
Glen Rock, PA
www.alpacanation.com/sunsetfields.asp
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bobvicki

2967 Posts

Posted - 08/28/2015 :  09:46:19 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Fiona,

Since you have put him with a variety of females it would appear to be him being the "problem", and as Bill stated it is not unusual to have a male that isn't ready until 3 years old or even more. One of our 1st males didn't get the job done until he was past 3 and then his 1st cria turned out to be a Blue ribbon winner so it was worth the wait.

Good luck with your boy.

Bob

Bob & Vicki Blodgett
Suri Land Alpaca Ranch
10371 N 2210 Road
Clinton, Oklahoma 73601
641-831-3576
alpaca@htswireless.com
www.alpacanation.com/suriland.asp
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Christiane

2830 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2015 :  07:55:26 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Some males mature early, some wait until three or later. I have a male that turned two last year, and I tried him on three of my girls, and two have recently dropped crias, so it all depends on the maturity. Other males I have had, were not ready until they were three.

Christiane Rudolf
Tanglewood Farm
19741 Victory Lane
Fayetteville, Ohio 45118
(513) 875-2533
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