This study was designed to determine the effect of location of the preovulatory dominant follicle and stage of ovarian follicle development on ovulation rate and embryo survival in alpacas. In Experiment 1, mature lactating alpacas were randomly assigned to one of two groups according to the location of the dominant follicle detected by ultrasonography: (a) Right ovary (RO, n=96) or (b) Left ovary (LO, n=108). All females were mated once by an intact adult male. Ovulation rate, CL diameter and embryo survival rate (heartbeat) were assessed by ultrasonography on Days 2 (Day 0. =mating), 8 and 30, respectively. Ovulation rate (96.5 and 96.3% for RO and LO group, respectively), corpus luteum (CL) diameter (10.2 and 10.6. mm for RO and LO group, respectively) and pregnancy rate (60.2 and 56.7% for RO and LO group, respectively) did not differ among groups. In Experiment 2, lactating alpacas (n=116) were submitted to ultrasonic-guided follicle ablation to synchronize follicular wave emergence. Afterwards, daily ultrasonography examinations were performed and females were randomly assigned to the following groups according to the growth phase and diameter of the dominant follicle: (a) early growing (5-6. mm, n=27), (b) growing (7-12. mm, n=30); (c) static (7-12. mm, n=30), or (d) regressing phase (12-7. mm, n=29). All alpacas were mated with a proven intact male, except five alpacas from early growing group that rejected the male. Females were examined by ultrasonography on Day 2 (ovulation rate), Day 8 (CL diameter), and Days 15, 20, 25, 30 and 35 (embryo survival by the presence of embryo proper and heartbeat). No differences were detected in ovulation rate among groups (96%, 97%, 100%, and 97%) or in CL size (10.3, 11.7, 11.1, and 11.1. mm, for early growing, growing, early static and regressing, respectively). Although, embryo survival rate at Day 35 after mating was numerically greatest in growing (65.5%), intermediate in early growing (52.4%) and static (53.3%), and least in regressing phase (42.9%), there were no differences among groups. Results suggest that neither location nor stage of development of the dominant follicle has an influence on ovulation and embryo survival rate in alpacas.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by Convenio de Desempeño en Investigación (2007 DGI-CDA-04), Universidad Católica de Temuco. M. Silva is a PhD student supported by a scholarship from Conicyt (Government of Chile) to join the veterinary sciences PhD program at the Faculty of Veterinary Sciences, Universidad Austral de Chile. C Norambuena is a postdoctoral fellow at the Universidad Austral de Chile supported by Proyecto Fondecyt/Postdoctorado N° 3110095.
- Embryo survival
- Follicular development