What is artificial insemination? Describe this technique.
Artificial insemination is the process of cross-breeding in which semen is collected from the desired bull of high milk yielding breed and injected into the genital tract of female animal during fertility period.
This method is used to improve the breeds of animals, generally cows, buffaloes, poultry, horses, sheep, goats, and pigs.
Examples of breeds of cows raised by this method are Karan Swiss (breed of brown Swiss and Sahiwal), Frieswal (breed of Holstein-Friesian and Sahiwal), and Karan Fries (breed of Holstein-Friesian and Thaparkar).
Steps of artificial insemination are as follows:
(i) Selection of a healthy and tough animals having high milk yield.
(ii) Collection of semen from the selected animal.
(iii) Preservation of semen by freezing or chemical methods.
(iv) Injecting semen into the genital tract of female animal during fertility period or heat period (during this period, cows and buffaloes are sexually excited and ready to mate).
Advantages of artificial insemination:
1. It helps in raising animals with desirable traits.
2. It is cheaper as semen from a single bull can be used to impregnate several thousand cows.