Tips on using and storing Semen Extender

19 January 2018

As we come into the season we thought it would be useful to write an article on one of the questions that we often get asked - how do I use semen extender? Here are some helpful tips:

Procedure for dilution: 

1. Semen collections and dilutions can be made at room temperature.
2. Care should be taken to avoid contamination of the semen with faeces, urates, etc.
3. The temperature of the extender should be at 68° F (20 °   C) to 77° F (25 ° C) before being mixed with the semen.
4. Semen is packaged in glass ampoules.
5. Semen and extender should be mixed at a 1 to 1 ratio.
6. Gently, but thoroughly mix the semen and extender with a pipette. Do not shake or agitate vigorously.

Procedure for storage:

1. Depending upon the volume, the diluted semen can be stored in either a test tube or an Erlenmeyer flask. If diluted semen is to be stored for longer than 1 hour and if volume is more than 1 ml (cc), the diluted semen should be stored in an Erlenmeyer flask.
2. Allow for plenty of air space in the container.
3. Cover tube or flask with aluminium foil. Do not stopper with cotton plug, rubber stopper, etc.
4. Place tube or flask in a beaker with enough water to reach the level of the semen in the flask. Temperature of water = 77 ° F (25 ° C).
5. The water bath with the extended semen can be stored at a temperature of 41 ° F (5 ° C) until the semen is needed for insemination.
6. The stored, extended semen can be used for up to 6 hours. During the storage period, the extended semen should be continually agitated so that the sperm cells do not settle to the bottom of the container.

Please click on the link below for a full downloadable version of these instructions and be sure to visit the dedicated Avian Breeding area of our site for the full AI range including the Semen Extender.