When you’ve got a 30-minute window to inseminate a mare and your Big Star semen is 35 miles away, what do you do?
You call parachuting extraordinaire Tullis Matson, or you do today (1 April), to leap from the skies, semen in hand, to the rescue.
Stallion AI Services, which announced on 1 April 2019 that it was offering unicorn semen, complete with a LUG (live unicorn guarantee), has this year come up with a different plan — a “skydive express” service for time-critical semen deliveries.
The new initiative is the brainchild of Tullis Matson, Stallion AI Services’ managing director and experienced skydiver, who has 1,600 jumps under his belt.
Time is of the essence in breeding, making airborne deliveries an ideal fit for the firm, with the added bonus of it being a way for Mr Matson to combine his skydiving hobby with his business, he said.
“We are a forward-thinking team at Stallion AI Services and are always looking at ways to improve and offer more to our clients,” said Tullis.
“We are lucky to have an airfield next to our stud farm,;the Skydive Express lifts us to another level within the equine breeding industry.”
Roger Dixon, clinical director of Ashbrook Equine Hospital, was one of the first to see the benefits of the new service. He called Stallion AI Services to say he had a 30-minute window to inseminate a client’s mare, Flairloop, with Big Star semen before she would ovulate.
Never wanting to let a client down, Mr Matson immediately dialled Busby Hicks, of neighbouring Tilstock Skydive Centre.
“I am more than happy to help Tullis,” said Busby. “We are located next to his stud farm, so we can have him in the air in under five minutes.”
Fortunately the weather was on their side and Busby was able to get Tullis in the air within five minutes, and on the turf of Ashbrook Equine Hospital just 10 minutes later.
“Here at Ashbrook Equine Hospital, we make sure we are giving clients the best service and aim to get as many mares as possible in foal at the first attempt,” said Mr Dixon.
“Fairloop has been tricky, she has failed to go in foal for the last three years. We purposely selected Big Star as we know his semen quality is excellent and thanks to Stallion AI’s skydive express service, she has the very best of chances to get in foal.
“We use semen from Stallion AI Services many times over during the season, and on this occasion the package literally fell from the sky!”
The Big Star semen arrived in time for the mare to be inseminated before she ovulated, and time will tell if the mission was successful.
Stallion AI Services is now aiming to roll out the skydive delivery express service across the UK. With the rising cost of fuel prices, the company is touting sky-delivery as both a faster – and potentially even cheaper – choice for mare owners, compared to standard road-delivery options.
“We are now in talks with Amazon to roll this out further, allowing their Prime customers to have this super-fast delivery option too,” added Mr Matson.
It is unclear whether the service will be available after 1 April…
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