“The system helps us catch things much earlier and improve the odds of a successful outcome,” says Becky Allen. “We can intervene earlier and work with cows that are not as sick as if you’d waited for clinical signs to appear. You can also see the impact of ration changes using the data.”
Channeling rumination’s power
The system combines rumination, heat detection and cow identification functionality in one unit.
Joe Allen says the activity monitoring component has helped the dairy cut synchronization protocol hormone costs by roughly $1,000 per month. Factoring in the amortized cost of the system, Allen estimates, “We are putting about $350-400 in our pocket each month, and we’ve seen a 10% increase in pregnancy rate.” He expects the system to pay for itself in 18 to 24 months.
“The system has really changed our reproductive management,” notes Becky Allen. “We can be more efficient with our herd check time—a lot of cows that would have been found open previously have been found in estrus by the system prior to the herd check and rebred. We can spend more time with cows that may have had a problem during transition or are noncycling, meaning we can utilize our time better.”
Allen says he spends about 15 minutes twice a day with the data to manage heat detection and herd health. "It’s given us the freedom to not be so concerned about whether anyone’s catching cows in heat or identifying sick cows. We just check the report and the information is there. Once you get the collars installed (which isn’t difficult), it’s the easiest system in the world to use.”
To learn more about the technology, visit www.SCRDairy.com.
1 Schirmann K, et al, Technical Note: Validation of a system for monitoring rumination in dairy Cows. J Dairy Sci 2009;92(12)6052-6055.
Source: SCR Dairy Inc.