4th March, 2021: The first batch of 15 Yak Artificial Insemination Technicians (AITs) from Highland Dzongkhags and the National Highland Research and Development Centre (NHRDC) were awarded certificates by the Department of Livestock on successful completion of 14 days training on Artificial Insemination (AI) and synchronization technique in yaks.
The first of its kind in the country, AI training in Yaks was organized by the Livestock Research and Extension Division (LRED), Department of Livestock (DoL) in technical collaboration with the NHRDC, Jakar and National Dairy Research and Development Centre (NDRDC), Yusipang. The training program was initiated as part of the Highland Development Program to improve the yak breed and conserve it through the preservation of frozen semen to be used for breed improvement of Bhutanese yaks under farm and field conditions using artificial insemination.
Yaks are central to the sustenance of highland communities and their culture and traditions. Yaks also play a key role in maintaining the rangeland eco-system and biodiversity. The Highland Development Program was instituted to deliver a holistic set of targeted interventions to improve the livelihoods and socio-economic development of highland communities. One of the strategic measures through this program is to establish a yak nucleus farm for pure-line breeding and application of assisted reproductive technology in yak genetic improvement through the production of native yak semen.
The AITs were trained in AI technique, estrus synchronization, physiological parameters and adaptation of hands-on acclimatizing to yak reproductive system, restraining and heat detection techniques by national experts.
The training was supported by Highland Development Program (HDP) and the Kanchenjunga Landscape Development Initiatives (KLCDI), ICIMOD.