Making 2021 Redheart Foals by Artifical Insemination (AI)

Frisky February

Artificial Insemination (AI) – A process that involves depositing good quality semen into the mare’s uterus at the right time, taking all necessary precaution to reduce infection.

 

There are many reasons why I decided to plan my barn the way I did, there are many reasons why I decided to complete an Artificial Insemination course and there are many reasons why I choose to try for early foals but all my reasons are due to my own personal thoughts on breeding and what suits me.

I’m employed full-time, up at 6am and home at 6pm, the work load I complete on my own and would never complain, breeding is a passion, every day is a school day and everything must work for me as an individual. Therefore, the stallion and mares must be cooperative in all manners, you can’t have a mare trying to get out of the stocks when you have fresh semen ready to be inserted.

To start at the beginning we needed to control our mares estrous cycle which is affected by light, turning the barn lights on at 6am and off at 10pm has given the mares 16 hours of “artificial light” and sure enough come February the 5th we saw our first mare “show” to our stallion.

This year we have 4 seasoned mares and 1 maiden, the seasoned mares are faultless with AI but we certainly prepared our maiden well in advance, washing her vagina, bandaging her tail and teaching her to stand quietly in the stocks well before AI could take place.

We invested last year in a set of stocks, a dummy mare and an AI “kit”, we successfully inseminated 4 mares, the mares were not a problem but teaching our stallion was certainly a challenge. The aim is for the stallion is to “flower” or “called belling” (which basically means he reaches the point of no return before ejaculation), I won’t go into detail, but our stallion went from being unbelievably shy to being obsessed and overly keen with the dummy! All his actions have been noted for future reference as his mating behaviour certainly changes with individual mares (such as he flowers and ejaculates within seconds with one of our mares but takes 4 or 5 minutes to even get aroused by another one of our mares). His sexual response (libido) certainly has increased this year with a very mature and sensible attitude.

AI takes less than 5 minutes to complete, from collection to insemination but preparation takes nearly an hour…
Many factors affect collecting from a stallion with an AV, temperature, the tightness or pressure that surrounds the AV, some like it loose whilst others like it tight, we have not experienced a “non-collection” from our stallion so I guess either we are doing what he likes or he really isn’t fussy? The last reason is the amount of lubrication (Ky jelly) used, remember, you are trying to mimic a vagina, if the AV is too slippery or too dry many stallions won’t ejaculate, I think we have this lube sorted 😉

As soon as our stallion sees the AV, the screaming starts, to an inexperienced person the noise is quite frightening but to a breeder its music! We are ready, hard hat on, steel toe capped boots, mare ready and stallion ready. The stallion’s stable is opposite the dummy and we put the mare in the stable parallel to him, her stable is opposite the stocks. We watch and wait for the stallion to become aroused and just as we see the flowering, we open the stable door, timed to perfection within a few strides he’s on the dummy making love to the AV like it’s his right and duty!

Our stallion likes to have what I call “his cigar moment”, after ejaculation, he always turns his head to the right, as if he’s looking at the mare – “was that good for you?”. He climbs off the dummy in a daze and he’s returned to the stable! The mare is then walked into the stocks and inseminated…

We have collected many times during February, we are convinced we have at least three mares pregnant but two just didn’t feel right, we’ll soon find out at their 16-day scan. At this first scan we gain vital information, first a positive pregnancy, secondly the detection of twins and thirdly by the size of the oocyte (egg) we can work out when ovulation took place and therefore predict the foaling date.

As a qualified AI technician, I can only use fresh and chilled semen, I can not use frozen. I am only allowed to use my certificate within the UK as per the Veterinary Surgeons Act 2010 No 2059. I must adhere to all limitations of disease control, for this reason I do not stand my stallion at public stud and do not have boarding mares here at Redheart Appaloosas, it’s just too impractical.

It will be wonderful to have all mares confirmed in foal earlier in the season to enable our stallion to compete back under saddle for the 2020 show season without him loosing weight fretting over in season mares…

Redheart Appaloosa Mare Pedigrees – Caricks Redheart

A look back at 4 years with Caricks Redheart.

Myka joined us at the age of two in November 2016 from Doncaster, England. She completed one season in the ring and was mainly shown by a junior.
Myka always looks for the mud and has a very affectionate character. Standing at 15.2hh she’s a great asset to our broodmare herd and has proved to an excellent broodmare.

With 28/30 Appaloosas in her 5 generation pedigree we see her sire, Drea Yakima Firshado has ApHC Hall of Fame horses, Red Eagle, Bambi E and Sundance 500 whilst her dam, Lambrigg Dollar Girl bloodline’s trace back to BRIGHT EYES BROTHER, JOKER B, THE EXECUTIVE, WAPITT (1966), PRINCE PLAUDIT (1963) and RUSTLER BILL (1996).

She has many Quarter Horses listed on the American Quarter Horse Hall Of Fame – LEO, DEAPTH CHARGE, JOE REED, JOE REED II, OLD SORREL, SOLIS, JOE HANCOCK, OKLAHOMA STAR, BILLY GLEGG, POCO BUENO, SKIPPER W, THREE BARS as well as OLD FRED (PHBA) and just to add for a giggle, SIRI SHEIK (1945) owned by Paula Cooper 😊

Myka’s pedigree is also steeped with some impressive Thoroughbred racehorses – West Australian (Triple Crown winner), BOLD VENTURE (won Kentucky Derby G1, Preakness Stakes G1), ST GERMANS (leading Sire in 1931). BLENHEIM (won The Derby in 1930), ROCK SAND (1903 British Triple Crown Winner), THE TETRARCH (leading Sire in GB & Ireland in 1919), SANSOVINO (winner of Epsom Derby 1924), BLANDFORD (Three-Time Leading Sire in Great Britain & Ireland 1934, 1935, & 1938), GAINSBOROUGH (winner of the English triple crown), MUMTAZ MAHAL (Champion 2YO Filly in 1923), PHALARIS (leading sire in Great Britain and Ireland in 1925 & 1928), MACARONI (won Epsom Derby 1863) and many more…

The 2019 Redheart Appaloosa Foals Are Weaned…

Well, that was the easiest weaning we have ever had…

Maybe because we have four foals, maybe because our new stables have “windows” for them to interact?

Minimal “calling” from the mares and foals, quite honestly, we don’t know why the foals were actually not bothered, so we are just going to go with it!

The Appaloosa and the CREAM Gene!!!

When it comes to Appaloosas and you have a Stallion that can pass his cream gene on to his off spring, we do not take for granted what we see before us, we have to test.

The cream when inherited does not show on black, it’s quite obvious on a new-born bay’s as it turns the red pigment into a golden colour, evidently known as buckskin.

Our two bay foals Rookie (left) and Reflection (right) are both EE Aa and both have inherited the cream gene, making them buckskins.


Our two black and white foals Revelation (left) and Relentless (right), look black and white! You can not tell if they have inherited the cream gene. They are both homozygous black (EE aa).

 

Only genetically testing has confirmed our filly Revelation has inherited the cream gene, our colt, Relentless has not inherited the cram gene.

Revelation’s black markings will eventually turn a beautiful blue/grey colour whilst Relentless will stay with that sharp black and white appearance.

Sometimes black and white is not always black and white…

 

 

 

 

The 2019 Appaloosa Foals – Three Months Old

15th July
Redheart Relentless – 3 months old today!
Homozygous black (EE aa) few spot (LP/LP) colt with one copy of the Pattern gene (PATN1/patn1).
Peyres Catori Cat x DRF Patahas Redheart
Eligible ApHC – 97% FPD, BApS GRADE A, and ApHC UK – A Register, not eligible with FAHR @ 72.0704%

21st July
Redheart Rookie – 3 months old today!
Bay (EE Aa) with one copy of Cream (CR/cr) making her a Buckskin, she’s a few spot (LP/LP) with one copy of the Pattern gene (PATN1/patn1).
Princesse Pascale x DRF Patahas Redheart
Eligible ApHC 100% FPD & GAP 5, BApS – GRADE A, APHC UK – A – Register and FAHR – 83.5937%

26th July
Redheart Revelation – 3 months old today!
Homozygous black (EE aa) with one copy of the cream gene (CR/cr) making her a smoky black near leopard filly. Heterozygous Leopard Print (LP/lp) and heterozygous Pattern (PATN1/patn1).
Redheart Pascalius x DFR Patahas Redheart
Eligible ApHC 100% FPD & GAP 6, BApS – GRADE A, ApHC UK – A Register and FAHR 82.4951%

29th July
Redheart Reflection – 3 months old today!
Bay (EE Aa) with one copy of cream (CR/cr) making him a buckskin leopard. He’s heterozygous for Leopard Print (LP/lp) and homozygous pattern (PATN1/PATN1) with one copy of nd1 for primitive markings.
Caricks Redheart x DFR Patahas Redheart
Eligible ApHC – 100% FPD, BApS – GRADE A and ApHC UK – A Register, not eligible with FAHR @ 67.8711%

Don’t Forget About The Stallion…

We all know a foal inherits 50% of its genetic make up from the sire and the dam, we constantly post about the foals and occasionally about the mares, I suppose because the foals are funny, unique and very NEW!

But, let us not forget our stallion DFR Patahas Redheart.

We have come a long way with Blu, from Switzerland at 6 months old in fact 🙂

Since his arrival Blu has been so easy to do, he’s kind and gentle, he has the most affectionate personality and that’s just a tiny contribute to his qualities as a stallion. His genetic make up is perfect for breeding and his one copy of cream adds the 50/50 chance of his foals being Buckskin or Smoky Black, not to mention his performance record in the ring!

His 2018 foal Ru has already won her first Championship and his 2019 crop are just quality with the same high level of intelligence with that soppy affectionate trait.

Blu was broken to ride earlier this year, although he turned 4 in January he needed something to focus on after the long winter, he was ridden away and took every day of learning as expected, not a bother or care in the world. None the less that doesn’t mean we are heading off in the ring under saddle, we like to give our horses time and time is what he shall have.

Out by day and in at night Blu is very chilled and enjoying a year off, time to grow mentally and physically.

He’s slightly run up at the moment in my eyes probably due to all the mares recently coming into season, we anticipate this cycle to continue unfortunately, well until our new paddocks are available, its a constant working progress here at Redheart Appaloosa Stud.

We are not breeding with him this year, we are a small stud that breed quality not quantity and we certainly don’t want a herd of young stock while the supply and demand is very unbalanced!

We are not allowed in the orchard with the horses, only for photo shoots 🙂
DRF PATAHAS REDHEART Sunday 23rd June 2019

It’s Not All About The Foals…What About The Mares!

The mares have given birth, the mares are being great mothers and feeding their foals very well but make no mistake these foals are “calorie suckers”, it’s very important to feed the lactating mare.

The mares and foals are out 24/7, they come into the stable every evening for a feed and this gives me a great opportunity to spend just 10 minutes with each foal.

They have their foal slips on and off in the stable whilst they under supervision, we are now encouraging them to lead and they all seem pretty chilled about it!

The mares, a month or so post foaling.

Redheart Pascalius

Peyres Catori Cat

Princesse Pascale

Caricks Redheart

April FOALS…

Well, what a month!

Two weeks (from the 15th to 28th April) we’ve seen the delivery of four healthy foals!

At 344 days Catori gave birth to an unusually marked few spot colt, six days later at 349 days PP gave birth to a buckskin few spot filly, which we will keep because the odds for another is quite high (50% filly, 50% buckskin and 50% homozygous). This is the 5th foal born at the stud on the 21st of April!

Another six days passed and we saw just before midnight the safe arrival of Evee’s first foal, a filly born at 333 days on Friday 26th. With what seemed like only a few hours sleep…we sat waiting and watching our second maiden Myka deliver her leopard colt at 355 days (just past midnight) on the 28th.

All our mares are exceptionally well and being great mothers to their foals, all the foals are healthy and have all straightened up and now running around the field.

To be honest, April has been a blur, there are many emotions of foaling but the best sight for any breeder is the view of two feet and a nose!

From the delivery, the foals all managed to latch on and all the mares passed the placenta (all intact). We do consider ourselves very fortunate especially seeing what unfolded before us!!!

 

Redheart Reflection

Please see each page for more information…

April madness!