The objective was to compare the reproductive efficacy of Ultrasynch, a synchronization program based on functionality of the corpus luteum as determined by ultrasonography, with an Ovsynch protocol. A randomized field trial was conducted on a commercial dairy in Cayuga County, New York, during scheduled weekly pregnancy examinations. Cows (n=745) determined nonpregnant 28 to 34 d after artificial insemination (AI) were randomly assigned to Ultrasynch or Ovsynch protocols. Cows assigned to the Ultrasynch management program (n=366) were treated based on corpus luteum (CL) diameter: cows with a CL >23mm received an injection of PGF2α and were bred via AI following detection of estrus (Ultra-PGF), whereas cows with a CL ≤23mm received injections and were bred on an Ovsynch protocol. Cows assigned to the Ovsynch management program (n=379) were placed on an Ovsynch protocol regardless of CL diameter. Pregnancy status was rechecked 28 to 34 d after AI; cows determined nonpregnant after initial enrollment were maintained in their assigned management group and received treatments based on CL diameter if in the Ultrasynch group and Ovsynch treatments if in the Ovsynch group. Hazard of pregnancy was similar between Ultrasynch and Ovsynch (hazard ratio=1.10, 95% confidence interval=0.88-1.36). Median days to conception were 98 and 87 for Ultrasynch and Ovsynch, respectively. The detection of estrus rate of cows in the Ultra-PGF group was 49%; better performance of an Ultrasynch management program may be achievable in a herd with a higher rate of estrus detection.
- Dairy cow