Stallion Collection / Training

Rupert collecting from a Stallion

Both Victoria and Rupert have now collected from over 40 different stallions in their work in NZ and the USA. Rupert also spent 2 months at Pacific International Genetics in winter of 2008 learning more about collecting and freezing equine semen and worked with everything from 18hh warmbloods to smaller rare American mustangs.

Each stallion needs experienced help from a confident handler to get them started. Younger stallions who have never mounted a mare are usually easier to train than an old horse trying to learn new tricks. Whichever, the stallion must be started correctly so as to ensure it is an enjoyable experience and no long term damage to their ego is done (yes stallions have egos too).

Training of stallion for live cover

It may be a natural process of birds and bees, but it is important that your stallion learn the etiquette of natural service where possible through proper early training. Our experienced staff can work with the stallion to minimize undesirable behaviours (kicking, biting and ensuring the first time is an enjoyable time) so you can work confidently alongside the stallion in future.

We can also train you to handle your stallion when serving naturally.

back to the top

Training of stallions to collect

We can work with you and your stallion to achieve semen collection for chilled semen transport. This is a many stage procedure that can include all or some of the following:

  • Train the stallion to mount a dummy for collection; or "off the ground" if he can’t mount a dummy due to injury or due to your own stud set-up and restraints.
  • Provide all the equipment to get you started including a dummy, AV (artificial vagina), semen shippers, extenders and semen evaluation equipment.
  • Train you to collect the stallion once you are back home. We can also supervise your first collections on site.

back to the top

Semen collection for fresh / chilled shipment

A major component of our work is to evaluate semen and advise on the proper semen extender to use for shipping around New Zealand. Our qualified staff can do this for you, or help you set up to do it for yourself -

  • evaluate the semen for fertility, motility, morphology and longevity using various extenders and specialised equipment.
  • test different extenders over a 3 day period to find the one that best suits your stallion in terms of motility and longevity to determine how well the semen will respond to shipment (an overnight courier may be sufficient rather than the costly air freight option).
  • provide the necessary extender and shipping containers
  • provide customised forms, applications and contracts for transporting and inseminating mares
  • Undertake day to day communication requirements with the vets and mare owners to ensure semen arrives at an appropriate time.

back to the top

Freezing and storage of semen

The sport horse industry has embraced frozen semen over the last 10 years or so. It is now an important factor to consider in any breeding program, there is no longer a need to be restricted to the stallion down the road or even to one in the country.

Freezing Semen

Increasingly too, colt owners are freezing semen before gelding a promising performance horse to have a little insurance that if the horse proves to be a top horse, they have the genetics on ice.

Or if a horse is sold overseas as in the case of Vigar Riffal, a top NZ endurance horse that went to the WEG in 2007 with owner Shane Dougan and then sold overseas. He left lots of little something’s behind that were frozen at Syenz the winter prior to the WEG!

The key to freezing equine semen successfully is testing … testing… and testing again. Through Dr Mennick, Victoria is using a routine of over 60 variations in the freezing process looking at different combinations between extenders, centrifuge media and freezing methods.

To date at Syenz, we have successfully tested and frozen 8 stallions including a 23 year TB. We have several bookings already for the start of the season from top riders looking to save semen for the future.

back to the top