AI in pigs is now regularly used around the world. The advantage for small pig breeders is that it avoids the costs and inconvenience of keeping a boar. It also allows pig farmers to use boars with better genetic potential than they could afford to buy.
As correctly diluted semen keeps for about 3 days, it can be dispatched by mail or courier services. Boars can be trained to mount a dummy sow for semen collection into an artificial vagina. The sow is inseminated by inserting a catheter into the vagina and rotating it to the left until it is locked into the cervix. The semen is then run by gravity through the catheter taking about 5 - 15 minutes. An aerosol spray of boar smell or tape recordings of a boar’s courting grunts can be used to stimulate the sow. Sometimes the sow will accept an assistant operator sitting on her back during insemination.
- Castrations of pigs must only be carried out by a veterinarian.
- Castration may not be neccessary.
- Castrates will grow faster than gilts but not as fast as entire pigs.