Bull Production (from the field)
Gaushala has targeted production of 18 million frozen semen doses by the end of year 2017. Undoubtedly to achieve the stated levels of production the total requirement of bulls for semen collection will be increased manifold. The production from the bull production unit, which is the main source of bulls to Gaushala, would not suffice to meet the requirements. Consequently nominated mating and Field ET in selected farms and farmer’s herd has been given added impetus to meet the targeted requirements.
Breed conservation and propagation of elite germplasm and propagation of indigenous breeds of cattle and buaffaloes
Since inception Sabarmati Ashram Gaushala has focused on conservation and propagation of indigenous breeds of cattle and buffaloes. Planned efforts to conserve and propagate important indigenous breeds were made through:
- Establishing herds of pure indigenous breeds
- Use of embryo transfer technology to produce embryos of high yielding indigenous cattle and buffaloes
- Production and supply of frozen semen with high genetic merit to agencies involved in indigenous breed improvement programme
During 1999-2000, a project entitled “Molecular Genetic Characterization and Preservation (MGCP) of endangered / rare breeds of Cattle and Buffaloes of Indian origin in the form of embryo” was assigned by NDDB to Sabarmati Ashram Gaushala for implementation. The project was funded by Dept. of Biotechnology (GoI) which covered Sahiwal and Red Sindhi breeds of cattle and Jaffrabadi, Pandharpuri and Toda breeds of buffaloes.
The project that started during 1999-2000 ended in December 2006. Animals of the stated breeds were procured and reared at Sabarmati Ashram Gaushala for production and preservation of frozen semen and embryos.
Another project on “Multiplication of Kankrej breed using Multiple Ovulation and Embryo Transfer (MOET)” was initiated during 1997-98. The project was in operation till September 2006.
The female calves produced from the above projects were used to build up the nucleus herd at Sabarmati Ashram Gaushala. The male calves produced were supplied to the Gaushala’s semen station and used for frozen semen production. Surplus calves were supplied to various agencies involved in indigenous breed improvement programmes across the country.
Apart from the work mentioned above, elite animals of Gir breed available with the farmers and institutions in the breeding tract were procured and brought to semen station and bull production unit for production of semen and embryos.
At present, there are 200 indigenous cattle (160 males and 40 females) in Sabarmati Ashram Gaushala.
Over the last three decades, Sabarmati Ashram Gaushala has remained the major supplier of quality frozen semen doses of indigenous breeds in the country. The semen doses are supplied to agencies involved in improvement and multiplication of these breeds.
1) Collaborative Projects
Gaushala had taken up collaborative projects with the following institutions in the country:
- District Livestock Farm, Hosur, Tamil Nadu to produce and preserve Red Sindhi embryos
- Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (TANUVAS), Chennai to conserve Toda buffalo semen and embryos
- Gujarat Agricultural University, Junagadh for production of Jaffrabadi bulls
Considering the scarcity of pure HF and Jersey bulls in the country collaborative projects were taken up with the following institutions for production of elite bulls of these breeds.
2) Anand Agricultural University, Anand to meet the future requirements of HF/Jersey bulls
3) Nucleus Jersey Farm, Ooty, Tamil Nadu to produce pure Jersey embryos