Monday, August 15, 2011

Spit Testing and Breeding

It had been so hot we didn't want to get our males out to do the spit testing, but with cooler temps we felt we could do so. Then if we had an open female, we could breed them while we had the male there. We don't like to do breedings in hot weather since it's hard on the males (and could possible cause them to become sterile).

Spit testing is where you put a male in with a female you hope is pregnant. If the female cushes, she is open (not pregnant) and needs to be bred. If she runs, spits and is all around ornery, she's pregnant. We find different females act slightly different so it's helpful to know how your female typically acts to use this method of pregnancy testing.

We are happy to say that on Sunday when we spit tested our girls, we noted that Latte, Snickers, Sancha, and Maddie all tested as pregnant (poor Greyt was spit on by a bunch of girls). Victoria was going to be bred on Sunday anyway (she was not yet bred so we knew she was open). Miss Kitty also appears to be open. We don't know what is going on with Kateri (could she still be pregnant?). It was hard to tell with Jewel and Tehya, we aren't sure but thought both of them may be pregnant.

Up until this point we had males with no offspring on the ground. It's unknown what a male will produce, so typically with the males first year of breeding, we only breed him to one or two girls. That way we can get an idea of what he can produce before putting him on more of our girls. I know some farms will use one male on almost all of their girls, but we have resisted doing that in order to make sure we don't have an entire year of cria from one male (they could be awesome or not so awesome). Now that we have an offspring from our males ARF Our Peruvian Tucker (AKA Tucker) and SA Peruvian Greyt Exxpectations (AKA Greyt), we are excited to see what they can produce from a variety of girls. For this reason, we are breeding them each to several different girls to get an idea of what stamp the male puts on their offspring. (Tucker's offspring would be our own OHVNA The Challenger, and Greyt's offspring would be Our Peruvian Dark Thunder).

Here is our breeding schedule to date:

Snickers x Greyt (6/10/11)
Latte x Tucker (6/19/11)
Sancha x Greyt (6/19/11)
Maddie x Greyt (7/6/11)

Not sure they are pregnant:

Jewel x Tucker (7/5/11)
Tehya x Greyt (7/16/11)
Victoria x Tucker (8/13/11)

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