A Preliminary Comparison of Semen Quality between Competing and Non-Competing Equine StallionsMegan Wilson and Anke Twigg-Flesner*
Performance in Equestrian Sport Research Group, Hartpury University Centre, Hartpury College, Gloucestershire, GL19 3BE, UK
- *Corresponding Author:
- Anke Twigg-Flesner
Performance in Equestrian Sport Research Group
Hartpury University Centre, Hartpury College
Gloucestershire, GL19 3BE, UK
E-mail: [email protected]
Received date: April 19, 2017; Accepted date: May 12, 2017; Published date: May 15, 2017
Citation: Wilson M, Twigg-Flesner A (2017) A Preliminary Comparison of Semen Quality between Competing and Non-Competing Equine Stallions. J Vet Sci Technol 8:443. doi: 10.4262/2157-7579.1000443
Copyright: © 2017 Wilson M, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Rationale: Artificial insemination allows sport horse stallions within breeding programmes to breed and compete concurrently. The level of exercise of stallions complete during the breeding season is a controversial subject. Daily exercise at low intensities is important for the mental and reproductive well-being of the stallion, however higher intensities of exercise, as seen in competing stallions, may have detrimental effects on seminal quality. The purpose of this study was to gain a greater understanding into the effects of competition and discipline on equid stallion semen through analysis of seminal parameters. The identification of optimal competition management for breeding stallions may lead to increased stallion fertility and economic gain.
Methods: This retrospective study evaluated the seminal data of 1130 stallion collections from two UK based stud farms between 2009 and 2015. Seminal volume, concentration and progressive motility were analysed for differences between competing and non-competing stallions, then for differences between stallion disciplines.
Results: Competing stallion semen concentration and progressive motility was significantly lower than noncompeting stallions (p<0.05). Semen volume was significantly higher in competing stallions (p<0.05) than noncompeting stallions. Non-competing stallion semen count was significantly higher than that of competing stallions (p<0.05).
Conclusion: The difference in semen quality between competing and non-competing stallions, as well as the difference between disciplines suggests endocrinological and physiological changes occur in relation to training intensity and competition. Further research into semen quality considering exercise and competition will allow for contextualisation as to why these differences occurred.