Artificial insemination is not merely a novel method of bringing about impregnation in females. Instead, it is a powerful tool mostly employed for livestock improvement. In artificial insemination the germplasms of the bulls of superior quality can be effectively utilized with the least regard for their location in far away places. By adoption of artificial insemination, there would be considerable reduction in both genital and non-genital diseases in the farm stock.
Artificial insemination has following advantages over natural breeding
= The main advantage of artificial insemination (A.I.) is that it increases the usefulness of superior sire to an extra ordinary degree. It makes available sires of inheritance for milk and butter fat production to all dairymen within a limited area. Previously only a few could get the advantage of good bulls.
= The services of superior sires are greatly extended. By natural services, a bull can be bred to 50 to 60 cows per year. On the other hand, by artifical insemination technique thousands of cows can be sired in one year by one bull.
= The breeder does not need to maintain a herd sire and thus can avoid the botherations accompanied with the management of a bull. It helps to regulate the breeding programme and the space between successive calvings without unnecessarily prolonging the dry period.
= The dairyman does not have the problem of searching and purchasing a new herd sire every two years to avoid inbreeding.
= The technique of artificial insemination can be made useful in cross breeding for hybrid vigour by quickly transporting the semen by air to different continents.
= The intensity of the spread of genital diseases is minimized if artificial insemination is conducted under complete sanitary conditions by the specially trained persons.
= It overcomes the difficulty of size and weight.
= It increases the rate of conception in females.
= Outstanding animals located apart can be mated.
= It helps in better record keeping.
= Old, heavy and injured sires can also be used with.
However, despite a number of advantages over natural breeding processes, artificial insemination has certain limitations. These are as follows.
= It requires well trained operators and special equipments.
= It requires more time than natural services.
= It necessitates the knowledge of structure and function of reproduction on the part of the operator.
= Improper cleaning of the instruments and insanitary conditions may lead to lower fertility.
= Market for the bulls is reduced while that for the superior germplasm is increased.
= Selection of the sire should be very rigid in all respect.
= Preservation and transportation of semen is difficult under severe climatic conditions like those prevailing in most parts of India.
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