Seasonal changes in scrotal circumference, the quantity and quality of ram semen in Hungary
Abstract. In this study, the quantitative and qualitative traits of semen were studied in seven rams of different breeds (Prolific Merino, Cokanski Tsigai, Barbados Blackbelly, Bábolna Tetra, Awassi, Ile de France and Suffolk), bred in Hungary. The semen parameters (density, volume, pH, mass motility, % motility, thawing and heat resistance), freezability of semen and the factors influencing these parameters were evaluated with respect to breed and season. The fresh and post-thawing quality of semen varied greatly with the breed and the season. The postthawing motility of semen cells was outstandingly high for Awassi rams in three seasons. During the test period, the smallest scrotal circumference was measured for Barbados Blackbelly, except for the summer when it increased by 12.5 cm. The reintroduction of artificial insemination could lead to a significant advancement of the sheep sector in Hungary. To promote this, we have provided useful and new information for breeders and organisations.