FARM SMART: balancing life as a suckler farmer and AI technician
| Feb 14, 2020
He has been using the Herdwatch farm management solution to reduce the amount of time he needs to spends on farm paperwork since 2015 as it “it makes everything much simpler and faster”.
Last year, Tom was picked by ICBF along with 2 other farmers in Ireland for a visit from an American research group. The visiting group were amazed at how easy to use the Herdwatch app was, and how Tom was able to register calves using his phone matter of seconds.
Calf registration in seconds
“I register my calves the minute they are born. I used to use the old paper book to register my calves but using Herdwatch is way more efficient. It’s faster and simpler and I honestly can’t fault it.
When serving cows, I use a handheld device that sends information to ICBF and that information is then sent straight to Herdwatch, I can also put my AI serves straight into Herdwatch who send them onto the ICBF either. The app is clever and tells me all the information I need like when a cow is due to calf or how many days since she calved, so if she comes back into heat after a month, I know not to AI her because she’s not long enough calved”.
Animal Movements now in Herdwatch
Tom understands the potential impact animal movement rules could have when it comes to selling and finishing animals. To help him make the best decisions quickly, Herdwatch has added a brand new feature where he can now see the number of movements in the ‘Residency Count’ right in each animals’ details within the app to support his selling and finishing decisions.
Recording Remedies on the spot
“Recording remedies is absolutely brilliant on Herdwatch. You can scan the barcode on the box or bottle, and all the relevant information pops up in front of you, so you don’t need to go writing it into the blue book anymore. Once again, it’s a lot faster and I have complete control over what I have used and what I have in stock.”
Reports at your Finger Tips
Tom has no need to worry about compliance inspections as the Herdwatch app helps him ensure all records are captured accurately.
“Passing my Bord Bia inspections have most definitely been the biggest benefit of Herdwatch, no more writing, just hand the phone to the inspector when he arrives, it’s all there, remedy purchases, feed purchases, movements in and out, calf registrations, it’s absolutely brilliant”.