A ‘fitbit’ to help keep track of stock location
CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency, and ag tech start-up Ceres Tag have created a new type of “fitbit” to help farmers keep track of where their livestock are and what they are doing.
The new technology, which takes the form of a smart ear tag, produces similar data to that delivered by consumer smartwatches.
Using the device, farmers can track where their herds graze, if an animal has escaped or been stolen and even unusual movements that could indicate an animal is giving birth or sick.
The smart ear tag was successfully trialled on 100 cattle at CSIRO’s Lansdown Research Station near Townsville, Queensland, last week.
The aim is to save farmers time and money compared to the costs of manually tracking their herds using vehicles or aircraft.
“Ceres Tag gives greater transparency over grazing management, allowing farmers to locate and monitor their animals to reduce risk and operating costs, improve efficiency and assist with traceability,” Ceres Tag chief executive David Smith said.
“The tag is GPS-enabled, allowing farmers to track the location of individual animals remotely, via Internet of Things (IoT) capability.”
Using on-board accelerometers, the tag can send out alerts for unusual activity patterns that could be triggered by events like theft and other disturbances of the herd.
AG TECH: A cow sporting the new CSIRO Ceres Tag.