Indian Bull’s semen worth $3,000
The grey-black bull weighs 450kg (990lbs) and is 10ft long and 5ft 8 inches tall.
“Every day somebody or the other comes to see him. He’s not just another bull, he’s a brand,” says his proud owner Singh, a 47-year-old third generation farmer in the Indian state of Haryana.
Yuvraj, named after an Indian cricket star, is his most prized possession of Singh. He’s a Murrah bull – the best of the 13 recognised buffalo breeds in India.
Inderjeet Singh, chief of India’s Central Institute for Research on Buffaloes describes Yuvraj as a “champion breeding bull”.
His semen is now possibly the most expensive in India, costing up to 350 rupees ($5.65) a dose which is more than 10 times the average.
A single ejaculation, triggered with the help of a teaser animal and collected in an artificial vagina, provides 500 to 600 sperm “doses”, each containing 20 million sperm.
Singh earns between three and five million rupees every year selling the sperms which he stores at home in thin frozen strips, preserved at -196C in 50-litre containers of liquid nitrogen.
Semen traders with cryogenic flasks, drive from all over India to queue up at Singh’s door.
“We have come to buy Yuvraj’s semen for the first time,” says Lalit Chowdhury, from neighbouring Uttar Pradesh state.
“I saw him at an animal fair in Meerut last year and people were raving about him. I want to sell his semen to farmers all over India now.”
Singh also earns money when Yuvraj wins state-sponsored buffalo and livestock contests.
Two years ago, a businessman from the southern city of Hyderabad offered Singh 70 million rupees ($1.14m) but Singh refused.
“I would only consider selling him if I got an offer which was three times this offer,” says Singh.
Murrah buffaloes are in particular demand for their high milk yield, an average of 7 litres per day, but some produce more than three times this amount.
High-fat buffalo milk – thicker than cow’s is used for making sweets and mozzarella cheese.