Along with Brad Heins at the West Central Research and Outreach Center in Morris, we are also using rumination sensors with cows on pasture. We have 230 cows being tested now, and we will be investigating the use of these sensors for disease and heat detection. Cows housed in groups at pasture are also difficult to visually evaluate, so sensors can be our 'eyes' 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The sensors continued to work even as we battled the coldest winter in the last ~40 years in Minnesota.
More individual cow sensor technology is being developed and tested. The world of precision dairy management is exciting. Mark your calendars for our next Precision Dairy Conference and Expo on June 24-25, 2015. We plan on holding a Precision Dairy event every other year (with the possible exception of 2017; the cycle will resume in 2018). The 2015 Precision Dairy event will have more of a national scope, with producer and industry panels, plenary talks and a trade show, but no scientific abstracts. Hope to see you in Rochester!