Accuracy in gilt or sow insemination is extremely important in an artificial insemination program. Without proper insemination, you won't get optimal value from your boars.

Birchwood Genetics offers these 10 tips to help you improve the accuracy and efficiency of your gilt and sow insemination.

1 Make sure the sow has been in heat at least 12 hours.

2 Be patient: First, put the female beside a boar with only a see-through gate between them. The boar will aggressively pace the edge of the pen and stimulate the female.

Second, place your hand firmly on the female's back. She should freeze beside the boar.

Finally, press more firmly on or sit on the female's back. If she stands, she is ready to inseminate.

3 Remove dirt and fecal matter from the vulva with a dry paper towel.

4 Remove the breeding rod from the clean protector and apply a nonspermicidal lubricant. Apply a small amount 1 inch from the tip.

5 Insert the breeding rod angled slightly upward to avoid entering the bladder. Follow the angle of the slope of the animal's rump.

6 Insert the rod with steady pressure. If it's a threaded rod, turn it counterclockwise. This will help the threaded end to enter the cervix. After the rod passes two or three cervical rings, you will feel the rod tighten as you try to turn it.

If it's a foam-tipped rod, don't turn it. Instead, tug gently to see if the female is gripping it. At that point, the rod should be in the inseminating position.

7 Attach the semen container to the rod and raise the container upside down. Apply gentle pressure to the container to remove locked air from the breeding rod.

8 Semen should flow with little or no pressure on the container now. The sow should actually take the semen in at her own speed.

9 Make sure to stimulate the female during insemination. Rub her underline and nudge her flank as you apply gentle back pressure. This promotes uterine contractions to help move the semen from the cervix to the oviducts.

10 Don't rush. Think in terms of how long it takes a boar to breed a female.