When it comes to animal health and fertility Stabler and Howlett are well placed to ensure the success of your beef enterprise. We have been working with local cattlemen and women for more than 40years, so we understand the industry and how we can be partners in the viability and success of your beef enterprise, from small herd to stud production all the way to broad acre grazing.

What follows below is a guide to the services we provide to beef producers from Marlborough in the south, north to Collinsville and west to Clermont.

Preventable Diseases Fact Sheets

Bull Breeding Soundness Evaluation

BBSE or “semen testing” of bulls is an essential management tool for all beef herds. All bulls should be assessed annually. Drs Bruce Howlett and Megan Smith are proud to be accredited with the Australian Cattle Vets BULLCHECK (VBBSE) Programme. The BULLCHECK evaluation uses prescribed assessments and summarises the result into fertility components. If a bull meets all the minimum standards of the examination, he has a high probability of being fertile.

The evaluation includes:

  • A general physical examination including conformation and the upper reproductive tract.
  • An examination of the testicles and measurement of scrotal size.
  • Collection and assessment of a semen sample.
  • Laboratory assessment of sperm morphology.

Bulls are a vital and expensive component of beef production. The BULLCHECK examination helps producers to select fertile bulls and protects against reproductive failure.

Custom Semen Collections

Custom semen collection is the collection and processing of bull semen carried out on property then forwarded to a processing centre for freezing into straws.

Stabler and Howlett Vets are very experienced with this process which involves:

  • Cleaning the bull’s prepuce.
  • Collecting semen via electro-ejaculation.
  • Microscopic examination of the ejaculate.
  • Dilution of the semen with egg/milk extender.
  • Packaging and dispatch to the processing centre.

Upon receipt at the processing centre, the semen is assessed in detail. Semen of viable quality is the frozen into straws for storage and use in artificial insemination. Increasingly our clients are using custom collection as a form of insurance against bull failure/death and for capturing genetics for use in the long term.

Pregnancy Diagnosis

Accurate pregnancy diagnosis is a vital management tool for breeding herds. Stabler and Howlett’s vets provide fast, accurate, and economical pregnancy diagnosis for herds of all sizes.

We offer both manual and ultrasound testing. Ultrasound is quicker where a high percentage of pregnant cows is present, especially in Wagyu and bos Taurus breeds. Where early pregnancy detection is desirable, the ultrasound will comfortably detect pregnancies down to 30 days. This is particulary useful post embryo transfer or A.I.