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Veterinary Medicine International
Volume 2011, Article ID 923053, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.4061/2011/923053
Review Article

Treatments to Optimize the Use of Artificial Insemination and Reproductive Efficiency in Beef Cattle under Tropical Environments

Departamento de Produção Animal, Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia, UNESP, 18618-000 Botucatu, SP, Brazil

Received 11 May 2010; Revised 27 August 2010; Accepted 30 September 2010

Academic Editor: Ali Honaramooz

Copyright © 2011 Ocilon Gomes de Sá Filho and José Luiz Moraes Vasconcelos. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Bos indicus cattle, the preferred genetic group in tropical climates, are characterized by having a lower reproductive efficiency than Bos taurus. The reasons for the poorer reproductive efficiency of the Bos indicus cows include longer lengths of gestation and postpartum anestrus, a short length of estrous behavior with a high incidence of estrus occurring during the dark hours, and puberty at older age and at a higher percentage of body weight relative to mature body weight. Moreover, geography, environment, economics, and social traditions are factors contributing for a lower use of reproductive biotechnologies in tropical environments. Hormonal protocols have been developed to resolve some of the reproductive challenges of the Bos indicus cattle and allow artificial insemination, which is the main strategy to hasten genetic improvement in commercial beef ranches. Most of these treatments use exogenous sources of progesterone associated with strategies to improve the final maturation of the dominant follicle, such as temporary weaning and exogenous gonadotropins. These treatments have caused large impacts on reproductive performance of beef cattle reared under tropical areas.