Ultrasound

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Jessica06

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We invested in an ultrasound machine a few weeks ago with the intention of offering it as a service, in addition to testing our own cows. Blood testing adds up! Curious as to what the going rate is in other places. Also, what you like about it, and what could be better. We've used it twice now on our own cows, and are very excited about the potential. We may have our first customer this week (a very good friend!).

Jessica
 

Farmgirl

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Jessica,

Will you be able to do fetal sexing? Don't think we are that far from you.

Thanks,
Farmgirl
 
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Jessica06

Jessica06

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We can, once we get a bit more experience under our belts! :) From what I understand, there is a specific window that you have to hit to have the best chance to determine sex, and it takes a bit longer depending on fetal positioning. But yes! We will be able to.

Chris - is it significantly higher than palpating there? We are thinking about keeping it the same....for a lot of cows, it is ridiculously fast. We did about 45 medium bred cows the first time we used it, and it literally took about 1 second on most to determine whether or not they were bred.
 

pdfangus

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My vet hired a new associate vet a few years ago rght out of vet school. Her specialty was reproduction and they bought the best ultrasound....I have no idea of the rate.....
I did some ET work a few years ago and the ET vet ultrsounded the pregnancies 100 % accurate....
For my part....since I can not change it once the cow is pregnant....it does me little good to know the sex of the calf so money spent on sexing pregnancies is money wasted....I want to know the cow is pregnant and my vet can tell me that at 35 days with palpation. Have to wait to 60 days to do sexing...don't know what the longest date is on sexing.....we often don't do palpation til spring herd work anyway....if I see a cow in heat during winter I may check her myself but normally just to confirm culling decisions.
 

Fire Sweep Ranch

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We have our recips ultrasounded to determine the sex of the calf, done around day 70 (vet likes between 60 and 80 days). He charges $12 per ultrasound.
 

Dega Moo

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RiceBeltRancher,
We use blood tests as well as traditional palpating today but we're interested in ultrasound as a future technology. I'd love to know more about the decision and the unit and the training you're getting. Would you be able to share some of that info?
 
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Jessica06

Jessica06

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We've been blood testing our cows for the last 3 or 4 years. We really liked the accuracy and the fact that it was non-invasive and we could do it ourselves. But waiting several days for results became kindof a pain in the you-know-what. Palpating was nice since you knew if they were bred or not while you had them in the chute and could sort them immediately. However, it's pretty invasive and generally risky on earlier pregnancies. (We sold a group of short bred cows at the sale, had them palpated, and all but one got called open. They should have all been 3-4 months. That kindof soured us on palpating.) Ultrasound basically combines the convenience of palpating with the non-invasiveness and accuracy of blood testing. Additionally, you don't have to wait until 90 days post-calving, you can find twins, sex the calf, detect uterine infections, and find fetuses that have died but haven't been expelled yet. And it's a whole lot faster. After talking to a lot of people about it and seeing how much interest there was, we decided that it was definitely an investment worth making. As far as training goes, I've been watching YouTube videos for months, and reading everything I can find. :) It's really not that difficult if you have a firm grasp of a cow's anatomy and know what you're looking at on the screen. Knowing how to AI helps, just so you're more familiar with the inside of a cow. My husband can do it. He got his degree in English (to his credit, he is a certified AI tech).

We ended up purchasing a Repro Scan XTC with a Repro Arm. http://www.repro-scan.com There are a lot of videos on their Media page that will blow you away if you've never seen it done before. It is 95% accurate at detecting pregnancy at 35 days. We are going to be generally waiting until 45 days on ours...if they make it that long they are a lot more likely to be safe in calf, since about 5% lose the pregnancy before they make it to 45 days. That kinda explains why it's only 95%.
 

Craig

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Going rate around here is a 30-40 dollar farm call and $3.50/hd and its money well spent! This includes sexing and anything else you want to know. I have all my cows ultrasounded, its nice to know if you have twins coming. I also like knowing how many heifers i have coming as well, helps me figure out how I want to market my calves.
 

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