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Angus Journal
Copyright © 2015
Angus Journal

Estrous Synchronization Planner

Decision-making tool can help select, plan and schedule synchronization protocol.

STAUNTON, Va. (Oct. 15, 2013) — Selection and implementation of a program for synchronized artificial insemination (AI) of estrus is made easier with a tool called the Estrus Synchronization Planner (ESP). In a presentation delivered during the Applied Reproductive Strategies in Beef Cattle (ARSBC) Symposium Oct. 15-16 in Staunton, Va., Kansas State University animal scientist Sandy Johnson explained how the ESP is used.

Sandy Johnson

K-State's Sandy Johnson explained how the Estrus Synchronization Planner (ESP) can be used to simplify selection of a synchronization protocol and to schedule protocol treatments.

According to Johnson, the Excel-based planning tool was developed by Iowa State University and includes a list of recommended synchronization protocols. The spreadsheet guides users through a process of selecting an appropriate protocol for the cows or heifers to be synchronized and the amount of heat detection desired.

When users enter the day and time they want to begin breeding, the planner calculates the precise day and hour that each protocol treatment should be administered and places the information on a printable calendar.

Johnson said up to three protocols can be compared in a cost analysis. Cost per AI pregnancy for the selected system is based on expected conception and estrous response rates.

“The planner can be downloaded, free, at no charge from the Iowa Beef Center website (, where users can also find tips for downloading and saving a copy of the Estrus Synchronization Planner. Before you download the spreadsheet, it will ask for your contact information so users can be contacted by e-mail when updates are made to the planner,” explained Johnson.

The ESP is also being developed for use with handheld devices, such as tablets and Android or iPhone devices. Look for the mobile app in iTunes and Google Play Store or at According to Johnson, the mobile version will have the most critical features, but not all of those present in the full version.

Johnson spoke during Tuesday's ARSBC session focused on how management influences the success of AI programs. Visit the Newsroom at to listen to her presentation and to view her PowerPoint slides and proceedings paper.

Comprehensive coverage of the symposium is available online at Compiled by the Angus Journal editorial team, the site is made possible through sponsorship by the Beef Reproduction Task Force.

Editor's Note: This article was written under contract or by staff of the Angus Journal. To request reprint permission and guidelines, contact Shauna Rose Hermel, editor, at 816-383-5270.