There is a great variability in the success of horse oocyte maturation and fertilization among laboratories. This study was conducted to determine if the meiotic and developmental competence of horse oocytes could be dependent on the method of oocyte collection, i.e., aspiration of follicular fluid with a vacuum apparatus, or opening follicles and scraping the granulosa layer. Horse oocytes were recovered from abattoir ovaries by aspiration or scraping and classified as having compact (Cp), expanded (Ex), or partial (P) cumuli. In Experiment 1 (Part A in May and Part B in October), oocytes were fixed immediately after collection to assess whether the collection method influenced the initial chromatin configuration of oocytes. In Experiment 2, in vitro maturation rates of oocytes recovered by aspiration or scraping were compared. In Experiment 3, oocytes were matured in vitro and submitted to intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Initial chromatin configuration differed according to collection method in that there was a significantly higher prevalence of diffuse chromatin within the germinal vesicle in oocytes recovered by scraping than in oocytes recovered by aspiration (29/87, 33% and 28/166, 17%, respectively; P < 0.01). Maturation of oocytes to metaphase II did not significantly differ between scraped and aspirated oocytes (56/101, 55.4 % vs. 65/106, 61.4%, respectively). The overall pronucleus formation rate after ICSI of oocytes recovered by scraping was not significantly different than that of oocytes recovered by aspiration (50/99, 52.6% vs. 50/85, 68.5 %, respectively); however, the rate of abnormal fertilization was significantly higher for oocytes collected by aspiration (14/73, 19% vs. 6/94, 6%, respectively; P <0.05). These results demonstrate that the collection method affects the population of recovered oocytes and may contribute to differences in results observed among laboratories working with horse oocytes.