Farm News

1st JUNE 2015
 
DAIRY HERD GOES SPACE AGE WITH PINPOINT

PinPoint is the precision breeding management service from Cogent.

Based on state-of-the-art heat detection and data processing, PinPoint uses the most advanced three-dimensional motion monitoring technology available today to increase the accuracy of heat detection.

The PinPoint system also includes the option of bespoke herd fertility analysis and comes with full and ongoing service back up and advice available to all Cogent customers.

PinPoint has the proven potential to improve the average UK herd calving index by a full 21-day cycle within the first 18 months of use and then take fertility management to a sustainably higher level in many dairy herds.

PinPoint facts:

  • Less than one in five UK dairy herds currently uses any kind of activity monitor to assist with heat detection.

  • Yet the concept is proven as a way to improve accuracy and therefore increase submission rates significantly.

  • Average submission rate in 2007 was 45%, use of an effective activity monitor as part of herd reproductive management can lift this to 85-90%.

  • Calving index of close to 400 achievable through improved heat detection (UK average = 425 days in 2007).

  • Continued use of the system and a more focused approach to herd fertility management that becomes habitual, means herds see more pregnancies, more calvings and more milk on a sustainable level.

  • Collars used in the PinPoint system have an extended life span compared to any other system available, as they have replaceable batteries.




A system that pays dividends
Take a 150-cow all-year-round calving herd, where the total cost of the system equates to just less than £65/cow. With an improvement of 21 days in the calving index (worth £52/cow), PinPoint could provide a return on investment within 18 months and thereafter pay dividends as it fulfils a role as part of the improved herd fertility management.

Tried, tested and trusted
The activity monitor collars used as part of the PinPoint system have been developed in Ireland by Dairymaster on multi-managed herds and used widely in the United States. Collars monitor activity using three-dimensional motion detection and transmit data wirelessly to a base station when cows are within 100 metres. The base station connects to the farm office computer, either via cable or wirelessly, on which the PinPoint software is installed to provide analysis and management of the information.

Activity monitors used in the PinPoint system are proven to detect heats with very high accuracy, with far fewer false positives than are seen in other systems. This is due to the sophistication of the motion detection system and the interpretation of the information by the software. Furthermore, data is collected three times a second and downloaded hourly when cows are within range of the base station, which again enhances the accuracy of the system.

The software supporting the system is stand-alone and compatible with most modern PCs and tablets, and there is also an APP for smartphones. Most importantly, the software is very user friendly and can be customised for individual farm requirements.

PinPoint is about much more than selling collars. It provides a new level of precision breeding management.



Once the information is collected, our technical support team can interpret the information from the herd's existing management programme and carry out a full fertility analysis where required. This allows us to identify any weaknesses and set targets so that the PinPoint technology is used to best effect.

25.11.13 Improving Dairy Farm Efficiency Event




West Midlands Dairy Farmers and other professionals with an interest in the Dairy Farming industry are invited to attend a free one-day event, organised by researchers at Harper Adams University and aimed at helping them to improve the efficiency of their businesses.



The event will be held on Tuesday December 17, at the new RD Park Dairy on Walford College Farm, and will be hosted by the Farm Manager, Neil Ridgway. Speakers will include Stacey Blease, post-graduate researcher at Harper Adams and Dr. Barrie Florey, Head of Land, Farm and Agri-Business at Harper Adams.



The day will begin with a presentation and discussion of the findings from two research projects, funded by the West Midlands Rural Development Programme. This will be followed by two workshops. The first workshop, which will take place before lunch, will consider herd health and will share the results of a three year research project evaluating herd health planning, in particular identifying factors that lead to more effective planning. The second workshop, which will take place after lunch, is aimed at helping farmers to improve skills and awareness in assessing financial performance and at increasing awareness of the impact of decisions on profitability. After the workshops participants will be offered the opportunity to view the new Fullwood robotic milking machine, based at the Walford Campus.



Neil Ridgway, Walford Farm Manager, commented, “We are delighted to have this opportunity to bring the event to Walford and I look forward to welcoming everyone and showing them around our newly installed milking facilities.”


The event is free for Dairy Farmers and professionals from across the West Midlands and will run from 10am until 2.30pm with lunch provided.  Dairy Pro CPD points are also available from attendance at the event.

Dairy Farmer Fiona Dale, who attended one of these events at Harper Adams University recently, commented, “The Herd Health Plan workshop highlighted the importance of herd health plans as a working document.  With up-to-date records it can be used to set measureable targets such as reducing lameness and mastitis. The afternoon session showed us how to compare our farm accounts with dairy industry benchmarks."

For more information about the event or to book a place please contact Stacey Blease on 01952 815066 or at sblease@harper.adams.ac.uk

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