Image caption: Dr Andy Hancock, a dairy resident based with The Vet Group at Timboon with a veterinary student, preparing to test bulls on farm.

He has been conducting research into the fertility of ‘mop-up’ bulls and found that one in five dairy bulls are at high risk of having reduced fertility before joining begins, which is a concerning and costly statistic. Farmers put a lot of time and effort into genetics and preparing cows for breeding – the bulls which service cows after artificial insemination (AI) are often neglected.

The research involved studying 32 seasonal calving dairy herds, and was able to make some key recommendations for dairy farmers in managing the fertility of their bulls, which you can read about in this Australian Dairy Farmer article.