Three innovations in dairy production management
The Sollio Agriculture team is always monitoring the latest developments in dairy production. Every year, experts review studies and talk with researchers around the world to learn about the latest trends. They convey this knowledge to agri-advisors, who then pass it on to you and others on the ground. In this article, which is part of our “Dairy Innovation” series, we present the 2021 management trends.
Farmers need to have eyes in the back of their heads AND everywhere on the farm. They need to monitor cows carefully, know when to dry them off, and detect illnesses early. This is why the Sollio Agriculture team works to stay informed about new production management concepts. Here are three trends to look for in 2021, according to our experts.
1. Rumen bolus
A rumen bolus the size of a large pellet can be used to measure internal temperature and calculate the pH of rumen when it is swallowed by the cow. Using these products, the Sollio Agriculture’s network was able to test different methods of ventilation during a heat wave to determine which one was best for the cows. The experts took temperature measurements in buildings that had fans equipped with either misters or water jets. Although this technology has been around for some time, it will probably start to become increasingly affordable.
2. Camera systems
Monitoring technologies in calving pens and in feeding, milking and sleeping areas are becoming increasingly popular. They allow farmers to monitor their animals and thereby analyze their behaviour more effectively. Farmers can easily check whether one of the animals is calving and can look into any system failures or other anomalies. This allows farmers to monitor their animals more closely. New barns, especially ones with robotic systems, are often equipped with this type of equipment.
Do all the cows eat at the same time and, as a result, some are unable to get their fill? Are some of your animals eating too fast? Camera systems make observations of this kind possible, thereby allowing farmers to identify malnutrition problems or metabolic disorders in their animals.
3. Satellite mapping
This very promising technology allows farmers to assess corn field yields before harvest. A satellite travels over the field several times to map and assess the biomass during the summer season, then a small sample is taken from the field to weigh the biomass. Experts use the satellite measurements to predict the total field yield for the season. The technology will continue to improve, but it has already allowed us to inform a farmer of the exact number of corn rows he needed to harvest to fill his silo.
To find out which innovations can benefit your farm, speak with an agri-advisor in your area.