If you are in the business of cattle breeding or are looking to get into it, you may wonder if a bull will mate with the same cow twice.
Having a bull who will mate with the same cows more than once will make it much easier for you come breeding season.
Let’s look into how this works and if your bull will mate the same cow twice.
The Old Cow Theory states a bull will only mate with a cow once, but this isn’t always the case. Some young bulls will mate and attach to just one heifer for a season, but older bulls will mate with 20-30 cows in a season. This depends a bit on the experience levels of the bull and its preference.
Breeding cows does take a bit of experience and knowledge to achieve successful calving.
Part of this includes bull-to-cow ratios and their mating practices.
We’ll fill you in on whether a bull will mate with the same cow more than once.
How Many Times Will A Bull Mate With The Same Cow?
The number of times a dominant bull will mate with the same cow varies due to a few factors.
For example, virgin bulls will sometimes attach themselves to one heifer for the breeding season, while a mature bull will mate with many cows during his active breeding seasons.
A yearling bull or inexperienced bull may also do this.
Each individual bull will have its specific capabilities.
It is important to consider health and form during bull selection.
This way, your herd bull will be capable of mating with the entire herd.
If your bull is not mating with all the cows you intend to breed, adding additional bulls to the mix will help.
Repeated breeding may also result in the higher chance of fraternal twins.
Further Reading: Cows having twins days apart
How Many Bulls Will A Cow Mate With?
The number of times a bull will mate with cows may also depend on heifer ratios.
Most recommendations for the bull-to-cow ratios indicate having one bull for every 20-30 cows.
The breeding ability of the bull and cows will also influence the number of times a bull will mate with each cow during calving season.
You’ll need at least two herd bulls if you have a cow herd of 60.
If your herd is less than 30, you’ll likely only need one herd bull.
It’s important to ensure your herd bull gets adequate nutrition, especially during calving season.
If the active breeding bulls have poor conformation and poor diet for bulls, you may experience issues.
How Many Times Should You Breed A Bull?
The amount of times TO breed a bull depends on a few factors.
This includes the age of bulls as well as bull nutrition.
The best time for active breeding bulls is between ages 2-4.
Breeding a 15-month-old bull may be successful, but it is best to wait for their most prolific breeding age.
As the bull ages, the bull semen tends to lose its potency.
The age of bulls for breeding depends a lot on the breed of the bull itself.
While some breeds indicate more aggressiveness in bulls, you must balance the pros and cons of each breed during the bull selection process.
Bull buyers will spend more money if they acquire sexually mature bulls.
Bull nutrition also affects how many times you breed a bull.
Keeping them well fed with a balanced diet is imperative for each herd bull during the breeding season.
As they age, the sperm quality will decrease, and sperm production will also go down, making them less likely to breed and eventually leading to infertility in bulls after about 6 years.
How Long Should A Bull Stay With Cows?
If you have high fertility bulls, keep them with your cows for 25-42 days.
So long as it is not an infertile bull, you’ll start to see successful results around this time.
High-quality sperm often comes at a premium, but it also means less time between successful breeding.
Once a bull reaches the age of puberty, it will start sperm production and get each heifer pregnant.
In some places, farmers collectively organize community breeding pastures where they share the bulls to service cows.
This way, the farmers part of the community pasture will observe whether the animal performance is up to par for successful breeding and overall mating ability.
It is also possible to leave your bulls with cows year round if this is accessible.
Keeping the bulls with the cows makes it a lot easier when it comes to caring and feeding.
Many farmers will keep their bulls and cows together year round and still have a successful three-month calving season.
While the ratio of cow per bull is not as important during the off-season, you’ll want to ensure you are getting the correct ratio when it comes time for them to start breeding.
How Many Years Is A Bull Good For Breeding?
The mating ability of cows depends on age. Usually, a bull will successfully mate with 20-30 females for about 2 years prolifically and will continue to have the mating ability for a year or two after this age.
There are some places where it is possible to test bull fertility and see if it’s worth keeping your bull with cows yearly, even if they are past the ideal age to be a bull sire.
A yearling bull may not be sexually mature yet as it is still not yet at the age of eminent puberty.
Some bulls experience delayed puberty, so you will have to wait even longer to start breeding them.
If this is the case, you may want to consider additional bulls for your breeding efforts.
Make sure to take genetics and history into consideration during bull selection.
An individual bull from a line shown to produce the necessary physical characteristics and healthy reproductive organs necessary to breed with a cow herd is worth the extra money.