Fertility in twins

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Anonymous

I read with interest the messages regarding twins. I recently purchased a beautiful longhorn heifer @ 6 months old. I have recently discovered that she is a twin and that the other calf was a bull calf that died at 3 months of age. My husband states that for some reason twin calves are always infertile. What is the rationale behind this phenomenon? I would like to know the pathophysiology if anyone knows. Am horribly disappointed as I had intended to incorporate this calf into the cow herd in the future and now will only be able to use her for roping/sorting events for a year or two. Oh well, lessons learned! Thanks to all for your help!

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Anonymous

Here's a site at Oklahoma State University explaining freemartin heifers:

<A HREF="http://www.ansi.okstate.edu/exten/cc-corner/freemartin.html" TARGET="_blank">http://www.ansi.okstate.edu/exten/cc-corner/freemartin.html</A>

There is a test available to detect whether a heifer will be fertile or not. If you want that address, let me know and I'll see if I can find it. Good luck...

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Anonymous

They are not always sterile, only over 90% of the time. The attached site has information on a blood test to detect freemartins.

<A HREF="http://www.vgl.ucdavis.edu/cattle/cttlfree.htm" TARGET="_blank">http://www.vgl.ucdavis.edu/cattle/cttlfree.htm</A>

dunmovin farms

> I read with interest the messages
> regarding twins. I recently
> purchased a beautiful longhorn
> heifer @ 6 months old. I have
> recently discovered that she is a
> twin and that the other calf was a
> bull calf that died at 3 months of
> age. My husband states that for
> some reason twin calves are always
> infertile. What is the rationale
> behind this phenomenon? I would
> like to know the pathophysiology
> if anyone knows. Am horribly
> disappointed as I had intended to
> incorporate this calf into the cow
> herd in the future and now will
> only be able to use her for
> roping/sorting events for a year
> or two. Oh well, lessons learned!
> Thanks to all for your help!
 
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A

Anonymous

You should go back to the outfit from whom you purchased the heifer and try to get them to refund your money or give you a satisfactory replacement. However, I have a feeling you may have some difficulty -- no REPUTABLE breeder would have sold you that heifer as a potential breeder in the first place due to the freemartin issue (and nobody in their right mind would buy a longhorn heifer to fatten and butcher for meat IMHO). But if you bought the heifer through a weekday sale barn I guess you have no practical recourse.

If you bought from a breeder and can't get satisfaction consider filing a complaint with the TLBA, and don't patronize the breeder again! I'm reminded of a bit of sound counsel I once read, wherein a bull raiser wrote words to the effect that one should never knowingly sell a bad bull -- because the customer always finds out about it, he tells his friends and he never comes back to buy another bull.
 
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Anonymous

The pathophysiology behind the 90% rate of sterility of heifers is that 90% of the time the placentas of twins touch and share blood. If they do, the female calf will receive hormones which will deform her reproductive tract. Remember, males become males by hormonal influence--which can effect the twin also. Females develop due to the absence of these specific hormones--by default as it were. Clear as mud?
 
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