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More colts than fillies, What am I doing wrong?

:cry:Maybe it is random, but I thought about it today. I have had one filly and four colts in the past several years. All I want is fillies!!! This is from three different mares. First Dutch mare had a colt and then a filly the next year. Second Dutch mare was a maiden and had a colt and the third quarter horse mare had a colt last year and a colt this year.

What am I doing wrong? Is there something I can do to even the odds. The first mare was 50/50, the second mare was a maiden and the third mare had fillies and colts in the past, but two colts for me. Is it what I feed? Is it the phase of the moon. Is there anything I can do? Bury a crystal stone at midnight? I am breeding a new mare this year and really really really want a filly. There is a new method where you can sort the semen which makes it possible to decide the gender of the foal, has anyone done this yet? Just saying 4 colts and one filly. Good thing is they were all healthy, but still I want fillies

Consult your local witch doctor.

Do you have the link for them (sigh, roll eyes)

There was a study that reported mares in good weight or gaining weight will produce colts. Losing weight or leaner produces females. Not 100 percent but statistical significant.

Another study about mammals in general. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130710182941.htm

I do feed my mares well. Would not say there were overweight, but I do feed them well. Just so frustrating as I would like to keep a filly for future breeding and with colts, well I do have something to sell. Need to know more about this new semen sexing method. Thank you for your suggestions.

There was a study that reported mares in good weight or gaining weight will produce colts. Losing weight or leaner produces females. Not 100 percent but statistical significant.[/QUOTE]

Seen this before, too. Lean mares will usually carry fillies. You don’t want your mares skinny, but maybe keeping them a bit on the fit side might help you conceive what you’re looking for.

I agree with above. Fat cows give steers as nature can be frivolous and produce ‘unnecessary’ males.

When they are starving more females are needed to continue on the species in case half of them starve to death.

Another year we introduced a starving bull. 4 heifers one bull. Then a fat bull the next week. All steers and one heifer out of about 15.

Other than that yes completely random.

Is this a joke thread?

Exactly what does the weight of the Mare have anything to do with X and Y chromosomes from the stallion?

Exactly what does the weight of the Mare have anything to do with X and Y chromosomes from the stallion?[/QUOTE]

It’s an evolutionary thing. Mares are more likely to have fillies during times of struggle to preserve the species while colts are born during times of plenty. Colts require more food and energy to raise to adulthood and are less likely to reproduce but if they do, the pay off is HUGE. Fillies are a safe bet when resources are few.

It’s just something that’s been proven in science before. There was an article about it once in Horse Illustrated.

If you want more fillies from your mares, you gotta keep them lean.

Well, I am willing to try that. But it is always May in Oregon when they are bred and there is grass. I hate starving horses, but if I have to I will. OK, well I have one Dutch mare to breed this year and I will start feeding her less supplements if this is what I have to do. But does anyone know anything about this semen sexing thing?

I know nothing about about sexing semen, but you shouldn’t have to starve them. Just keep them lean like you would if they were going to show. Probably cut grain maybe but keep the supplements and grass. You should be able to see the two back most ribs but no more. Does that make sense?

It makes sense, just contrary to how I like to see them. One of the three mares did keep fairly lean, as she was a semi-hard keeper, but still had a colt.

The other two were more well fed, but not fat. Hey, I am desperate here, so will try it. I will cut back the grain for the Dutch mare I am breeding soon. I hate not to feed my horses well, but what you say makes sense.

I believe they have to be losing condition at the time of inception. After that they can go back to being heavier. And I think losing is more important then the actual weight. So it is more of a three month or less change.
The hard keeper would have gaining conditions at the time of inception if you feed her to gain. I would try a month out or less before they are bred.

The “Leaner mare” thing may work with some horses, but some mares just seem to prefer creating fillies. And some stallions just seem to “push” fillies. Wasn’t there a study some time ago about certain mares having a “fallopian environment” that was friendlier to sperm with X or sperm with Y chromosomes? And there was a difference in how those different sperm swam to the egg? So, although the stallion provides the sex determination through its sperm donation, the mare may have some inadvertent control over which of those sperm make it to inseminate the egg? I’m oversimplifying it, but it was a source of discussion several years ago on this forum?

OP - it is funny, because if you are breeding dressage horses, colts (geldings) are SO MUCH easier to sell. Many AA riders don’t want a mare. So at least from a re-sale standpoint, I would always prefer colts.

It is like with human. If they were inseminated standing up…boys…if inseminated while laying down…girls.

Joking aside, I have also read that femal embryos would tend to be more resistant than male embryos. What I read was not focused on the mares weight, but rather on the quality of the reproductive system. Older mares and mares with more damaged uterus tend to carry more fillies to term as the male embryos would have less chance of surviving in a less optimal environment.

I don’t think show condition and starving are synonymous so I am not sure keeping mares show fit dovetails with that suggested method based on herds facing true harsh conditions. I have not read the study about true hardship but an animal’s body knows the difference between a true shortage and being fit. It does not follow that because starving animals/animals experiencing hardship produce more female offspring you can mimic that effect by keeping an animal fit/healthily lean. Just because X causes Y doesn’t mean that something maybe a little like X also necessarily causes Y. Nor do I think any vet would put offspring sex higher on the priority list than ensuring adequate nutrition to the dam. It concerns me greatly that anyone would just “cut back” a pregnant mare’s food in the hopes of getting a filly SIMPLY ON THE BASIS OF SOME INTERNET DISCUSSION WITH NO LINK TO ANYTHING REMOTELY SCIENTIFIC. OP please consult your vet.

I have a slightly other opinion… There are mares who have more fillies. so you need to look into the relatives of your broodmares… For example I have a mare whose mother got around 20 foals… And I know only of one or two colts out of her. All the other foals were fillies… My mare produced 5 foals for me guess how many colts… NONE…
And I have another mare. Her mom only had 3 foals, but 2 fillies and 1 colt. My mare produced 3 foals for me (1 colt and 2 fillies) and then I sold her and she got another filly for her new owner…
So my experience is that it runs in the family…


So my experience is that it runs in the family…[/QUOTE]

I agree, I think some mares are more likely to produce colts, other more likely to produce fillies. We all know the human variants: my grandmother had five sons and no daughters, her sons went on and had almost entirely daughters with a few sons here and there. I think the mother has a lot to do with it – some families are simply dominated by one gender. A friend of the family is in the breeding business and she has one mare that has produced 8 foals… all fillies.

I’m also with vxf11, a body knows the difference between true hardship and challenging conditions: I would not ever be depriving a mare of anything to influence the gender of the foal. I read that study and the evidence was very scant – it was only that, a study. There is a much more published and reviewed study out there in humans that shows that true hardship has compounding and extremely harmful damage to not only the generation that endured the hardship but also the generations following… I believe it was done on Scandinavian families and, IIRC, they found changes in the DNA of the offspring that survived famine and the changes were not good.

I agree with above. Fat cows give steers as nature can be frivolous and produce ‘unnecessary’ males.[/QUOTE]

A slight modification… cows will have bulls. We make steers when we cut the dangly bits off the bulls :wink: