e5 Racing, the owners of New Money Honey decided to have the sex of her fetus determined prior to delivery.
The procedure is done by examining the mare for pregnancy at 60 to 70 days post-ovulation (the examination can also occur later on between 90-140 days but, it is generally not as accurate). The veterinarian will use a transducer to find a fetus. When the fetus is located, the entire fetus is scanned, visualizing the head and remainder of the body. Determinations are made in utero by locating the genital tubercle and defining its position relative to other fetal structures. This is what dictates the sex.
Horse owners will have the fetal sex determined to allow them to manage aspects of their business including the value of the foal as this is influenced by gender. In addition, it also affects the value of the mare in what she produces as offspring.
Incorporation of sexual determination into breeding programs increased rapidly when owners realized that it was a very accurate and useful management tool. Much of the accuracy is due to the fact that there is no diagnosis made unless the practitioner is certain.
Do you think New Money Honey is having a filly or colt?! Take a look at the photo below for a clue.
Excerpts from this article were written by Richard Holder, DVM