It’s clear that sheep farmers are starting to take an interest in recording data for their sheep flocks. This is undoubtedly helped by the fact that there are now software and hardware options that don’t require a large capital investment and are easy to use. A good example, is the TAG Wales “Ease of Data Collection” project that has recently completed after a 12 month duration.
Flock Data Recording Success
Over half the sheep farmers participating had no prior experience with sheep data recording using electronic identification (EID). Instead of costly handheld computers or fixed panel readers, the project used a simple stick reader together with an Android Smartphone or Tablet to store the data. The latter types of device were already in use on several of the farms for either personal or business purposes, so no additional investment was required.
This low-cost system is comprised of:
- A cloud based farm software account to store the data and produce reports
- Mobile “App”
- Android smartphone or tablet computer (with Bluetooth facility)
- Low-cost stick reader (PTS or Tru Test)
These components allowed the farmers to record routine flock events like medicine treatments for each animal EID tag scanned. At lambing time, ewes can be linked to their lambs, which, over the course of several seasons lets you see which breeding ewes are making the most return.
Another option for the system is to connect a Bluetooth weigh indicator (like the Tru Test EziWeigh 7), which allows animal weights to be recorded via the Smartphone App. This function made it easy for the farmers to monitor lamb performance throughout the season. At the moment the weight is recorded, the daily liveweight gain is shown on-screen. As well as enabling lambs to be sold at the optimum time, regular weighing can show which areas of pasture around the farm are producing the best results in terms of output.
For further information on this cost-effective flock recording system, give Orchid a call on 01536 443300 for a friendly, no-obligation chat.