Technology is being integrated into farming more and more. From drones to smart cows, plenty of new innovations can help with milking and breeding processes and provide information about rations.
On many farms, cows are milked by hand or machine, which can be unrealistic and inconvenient. This can lead to milk being wasted and an overall decrease in production. Thankfully, technology can help by providing solutions that increase milk output and improve cows’ overall health and longevity. Here are 5 smart ways technology can improve your milking operations.
1. Milking Systems Modernization: Automating Milking Operations
One of the most time-consuming tasks of farm life is milking cows. By using a robotic milker, dairy farm owners can greatly reduce the labor-intensive process of milking a cow and avoid time-consuming repetition. The robotic milker works by using a suction ring to grab milk from the teat, which is highly efficient and convenient. They are also easy to install, requiring minimal operations.
Cows are most likely to become stressed and nervous when being milked by hand or with a machine that cannot be easily rotated around the body. Automated milking systems are designed to handle different-sized cows, so you won’t have to worry about size limits for machinery or supplies.
2. Improving Milking Practices with Real-Time Data
Using advanced milking systems, farmers and technicians can gain instant insight into the health of their cows. This helps them determine when it might be best to check a cow’s health and plan for important events. Data management software provides these insights by collecting all the information typically stored in spreadsheets and databases by stores in one place instead.
More so, Decision Support Systems (DSS) help dairy farmers solve complex problems by improving the decision-making processes. Dairy farm decision support systems (DSS) are computer information systems that assist dairy farmers in solving complex problems or decision-making.
3. Efficiently Tracking the Cow’s Overall Health
Because farmers can collect and visualize so much information about their cows, they are more likely to invest more in their cattle’s overall health. This can help eliminate unnecessary procedures when a cow is sick, which means the farmer can save time and money. Using data management software, farmers can decide which procedures are most important and track each cow’s overall health to determine which issues need to be addressed first.
4. Rotating Swinging Cow Brush
A cow can be milked with a robotic milker, but it is still very important to physically attend to the cow. This means that farmers must brush the cow’s coat each time they attend to one. However, the process of physically brushing a cow can take quite some time, and that’s where technology comes into play again. Specifically, farmers can use a rotating swinging cow brush to brush cows more efficiently. The rotating brush automatically switches between sides as you move across the coat so you can cover more ground in less time. Thus, it is a valuable tool that can save time, reduce stress, and improve cow health.
5. Cow Identification Systems
Many dairy farms use RFID (radio frequency identification) chips to mark their cows. The chip has two main benefits: the ability to monitor an individual cow’s activity and information regarding their health and reproductive cycle. Much like a tracking system, these chips can tell farmers when a cow is in heat and what days she is most likely to conceive. They also tell farmers when a cow needs medical attention and keep track of her production over time.