Effects of novel females and stage of the estrous cycle on sexual behavior in mature beef bulls

J. D. Bailey, L. H. Anderson, K. K. Schillo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

The objective of this experiment was to determine the effects of unrestrained females on sexual behavior of bulls. Twelve Angus bulls were used in three Latin square replicates where sexual interactions between one bull and one female were quantified for each of four 60-min tests (T1, T2, T3, and T4, respectively). All bulls received the following treatments: 1) exposure to four estrual females in sequence (A-B-C-D); 2) exposure to two estrual females in alternating sequence (E-F-E-F); 3) exposure repeatedly to one estrual female (G-G-G-G); and 4) exposure repeatedly to one diestrous female (CON). During T1, mount interactions, mounts with intromission and mounting intervals were similar when bulls were in A-B-C-D, E-F-E-F, or G-G-G-G. Fewer mount interactions, no mounts with intromission, and increased mounting intervals (P < 0.05) occurred in CON. During T2, there were more mount interactions, more mounts with intromission, and decreased mounting intervals (P < 0.05) when bulls were in A-B-C-D or E-F-E-F compared with when they were in G-G-G-G or CON. More mount interactions (P < 0.05) occurred in G-G-G-G compared with CON, but mounts with intromission and mounting intervals did not differ. During T3, more mount interactions (P < 0.05) occurred in G-G-G-G than in CON; otherwise, sexual behaviors were similar among treatments. Mounting intervals during T3 were similar among A-B-C-D, E-F-E-F, and G-G-G-G, but were all decreased (P < 0.05) compared with CON. During T4, more mount interactions, more mounts with intromission, and decreased mounting intervals (P < 0.05) occurred when bulls were in A-B-C-D compared with other treatments. Mount interactions were similar when bulls were in E-F-E-F, G-G-G-G, or CON; however, more (P < 0.05) mounts with intromission occurred when bulls were in E-F-E-F compared with G-G-G-G or CON. Mounting intervals during T4 were decreased (P < 0.05) in E-F-E-F compared with the CON treatment, whereas in G-G-G-G, they were intermediate. Mounts without intromission were not affected by female novelty or receptivity, but novel females induced more flehmen responses. In conclusion, novel, females, overall, enhanced sexual activity of bulls; however, bull sexual responses diminished after 2 h, even when a novel female was presented. Estrual females that were repeatedly paired with bulls displayed diminished sexual receptivity, but if mated females were rested for 60 min, they allowed further copulation from familiar bulls that were not sexually sated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)613-624
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Animal Science
Volume83
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2005

Keywords

  • Bulls
  • Cattle
  • Coolidge Effect
  • Intromission
  • Mounting
  • Serving Capacity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics

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