Bovine embryo transfer

Improving your heard is just a question of strategy

Thanks to genomics, our team can now optimise your choice of cattle and allow you to obtain a superior breed. Our studies have shown that only 20% of a heard (cows and heifers) have the required genetic potential for embryo transfer.

To ensure the selection of good candidates, our team thoroughly evaluates each animal according to precise criteria such as milk production and longevity of their parents

To minimise the risk of failure

To maximize the ovarian response, the theriogenology Service offers specialised follow ups to their clients before, during and after superovulation

A complete genital examination of the animal undergoing superovulation is performed to:

  • Determine donor potential;
  • Assure good uterine health;
  • To detect anomalies that could compromise the success of the superovulation.


During precise moments of the genetically superior animal’s estrus cycle, ultrasound examinations are performed to allow us to identify the cows or heifers with the most follicles and therefore a greater potential for embryo production.

The close follow ups offered by our team will allow the donor to conceive again without delay and a second embryo harvest can be rapidly planned for.

These services are offered directly at the farm, but in certain cases, the animal can be directly hospitalized at the CHUV’s Farm Animal Hospital.

Each selected donor can superovulate twice, according to the contract. The freshly collected embryos are transferred on the same day which maximizes the receiver’s chances of success. The receivers are animals from the herd with the lowest genetic potential, namely approximately 70% of an average herd.

Certain embryos can also be frozen and banked at the CHUV or directly at the farm. Freezing allows the breeder to choose the best time of the year to perform an embryo transplant.  To maximize the success rate, we do however recommend that the transfer be performed as soon as possible.

Embryo transfer must be done 7 days following a heat or 5 days after a blood loss from the receiver. A complete genital examination of the receiving cow before the transfer of the embryo is performed to assure adequate uterine health and the presence of a good quality corpus luteum.

An ultrasound will then confirm the beginning of gestation, namely 25 to 30 days following the embryo transfer. Ultrasounds will then be performed at regular intervals.

For more information concerning embryo transfers and our fees, do not hesitate to contact us.