Effectiveness of a low-dose Norgestomet ear implant in short-term protocols to induce estrus in ewes during the non-breeding season in Brazil.


R. Bras. Zootec.




ABSTRACT The objective of this study was to evaluate the reproductive performance of ewes subjected to a short-term protocol for estrus induction using 1 mg of Norgestomet during the non-breeding season in Brazil. A total of 84 ewes were randomly divided into two equal groups (n = 42 per group). Controlled Internal Drug Release (CIDR) containing 330 mg progesterone was inserted into the vagina in the first 42 ewes, and for the other 42 ewes in the second group, 1 mg of Norgestomet was placed subcutaneously in the convex surface of the ear. Implants and devices were removed in both groups on day 6. Following the removal of implants and devices, 10 mg of PGF2α and 300 IU of eCG were injected in all the ewes. After 48 h of application, three fertile rams were added to the herd. Ewes and rams were kept together for four days. Rams were removed on day 12, and after 42 days, pregnancy was diagnosed by ultrasound scanning. Short-term protocols using either an intravaginal device or ear implant were similarly effective to estrus induction (95.23 vs. 92.85%), and all ewes from both groups had estrus manifestation within 72 h after implant removal (72±9 h). In addition, no significant difference in pregnancy rate was observed between ewes treated with the intravaginal device and ear implant protocols (52.38 vs. 57.14%). These results suggest that 1 mg of Norgestomet is a good alternative for short-term protocols for estrus induction/synchronization during the non-breeding season in ewes. It is possible to replace the progesterone-releasing intravaginal device by the ear implant and obtain the same reproductive effectiveness in ewes.

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