Will cow be a good candidate for embryo transfer?
We have a cow that is a good mama, but we have a hard time getting her to catch to artificial insemination (AI). She breeds naturally every year and weans a good calf. We are considering putting in some embryos and wondering whether she would be a good candidate for embryo transfer.
Ottawa County Michigan
As you suggest, the primary trait for recipient selection is fertility. There are a lot of variables that might have affected the success of settling this cow to AI. However, from what you have described—assuming that the cow typically breeds early to bull breeding—it would seem that the lack of AI success is, more than likely, due to factors other than this cow's fertility. As such, this cow would likely be a good ET recipient.
A word of caution: If there have been problems with AI programs in the past, this would indicate that there will be challenges with achieving a successful embryo transfer (ET) program. Make sure that you have professionals with proven track records working with you on estrus synchronization, AI, and ET.