How to measure animal performance?
According to Dr Rick Machen, a livestock expert at Texas AgriLife in Uvalde, figures of birth weight, weaning weight and yearling age are very important for all livestock farmers. You should rely on accurate figures especially when administering dewormers and antibiotics. You will effectively avoid overdosing an animal or giving an underdose that is ineffective.
Dr Machen maintains that regardless of the animal's size, all farmers must be able to measure performance. These readings are critical in adjusting animal management for the better. For example, you can pull an underperforming animal from the herd. At the same time, you can calculate the ability of a cow to raise healthy offspring from the difference in its weaning and birth weights.
Many animal health experts concur that weaning weight is an important measurement. You can recognise improved genetics among your animals from a well-calculated finding. For example, if a calf gains more weight than expected before reaching its predetermined age, you know that it is a healthy breed. If the opposite happens, you know you need to check something, such as overhauling its diet.
Electronic Identification Systems
The electronic identification system (EID) is perhaps the most intuitive approach to measuring the performance of animals. It has the ability to identify any worrying trends in the development of individual animals.
With the system, you can recognise signs of sickness or inaccuracies such as poor feed conversion. The system relies on those scales with an internal memory. It tabulates figures based on the history of the animal and its current weight. The biggest advantage is that it can suit all your livestock weighing preferences.
Improve livestock management decisions
The livestock industry in Australia is one of the best in the world. In 2013-2014, the industry was valued in excess of $23 billion. Proper management is the explanation for this success. The industry relies on accurate tools that not only measure the live weight of animals, but also monitor their progress over time.
As these tools give accurate data, farmers make good decisions on the management of their farms. These decisions include the supply of feed to each animal and the most appropriate date of selling it for maximum profitability.
Build a robust and reliable technology
Researchers are developing reliable technology for error-free monitoring of animal progress. Light Detection and Ranging (LiDaR) technology is a 3-dimensional laser technology that uses structural statistics.
With unprecedented accuracy, it can create a 3-D image of the shape and surface features of the animal being monitored. It launches harmless pulses of light at the animal and a mounted sensor tabulates results. If successful, LiDAR and a separate stereo vision technology are expected to transform the measurement of animal performance.
A necessity for livestock business
Any livestock business needs to make maximum profits by reducing wastage. As meat is sold per pound, you can calculate the worth of your business by taking the collective measure of your animals' weight. All unproductive animals should either be culled or used otherwise for the benefit of the livestock business. In large-scale ranches, farmers should take advantage of portable livestock scales for efficient monitoring. Similarly, use these scales to determine animal weights before entering them in a contest. Evidently, tracking the performance of your animals today is essential.