Weighing and EID Systems Offer Livestock Producers the Ultimate Record-Keeping Powerhouse
Having access to more information means better management. For seedstock operations which collect large quantities of data, this is especially true and ensures cattle genetics are selected and marketed effectively.
"A lot of producers work their own bulls and we also have universities doing bull tests," says Ray Williams, Gallagher North America's business development manager. "There's a heavy amount of data collection happening. The (weighing) systems we sell are extremely beneficial to keep track of all this information at chute side."
According to Williams, the ultimate data-collecting trio consists of a Gallagher weighing system paired with an electronic identification (EID) reader and data collection system.
"A scale and one of our high end units has the capability to capture every conceivable measurement you can imagine," says Williams.
Williams points out Gallagher's Livestock Manager TSi2 weighing system is currently the industry's most advanced scale data collection unit available on the market. The unit is 100% customizable and designed to work on nearly every possible type of livestock operation and production system imaginable. However, where it shines is at chute side.
"It's really designed well for chute side data accumulation and recording," says Williams.
At Mushrush Red Angus in the Kansas Flint Hills, cattlewoman Connie Mushrush says her Gallagher Livestock Manager TSi2 is her "brain" when she's working cattle through the chute.
"I had reached a point where I would work outside all day at the chute, only to come in and repeat the entire process on my PC in an attempt to get data entered," says Mushrush. "This system has been my lifeline to more accurate data collection due to less human error and better tracking."
Using the high-end, user-friendly software, known as APS (or Animal Performance Software) which accompanies Gallagher's weighing and data collecting units, producers are able to quickly and easily upload data to their computer. Afterward, Williams explains, this software allows producers to analyze and filter data, search for specific key words or elements, and export data as a CSV file, and even prepare data for upload to breed associations to assist in formulation of expected progeny differences (EPDs). A smart phone app also exists to allow data to easily review data on the go.
For Mushrush, her main enterprise consists of a 750-head registered Red Angus herd. She uses the TSi, as well as the EID smart wand reader on every animal that goes through her chute on a cattle work day. Using the combo, Mushrush is able to collect and record a variety of information including:
- Weaning, yearling, and ultrasound weights
- Mature cow weights
- Body condition scores on every cow at weaning
- Pregnancy status of bred cows
- Vaccination and deworming schedules
- Artificial insemination info
Along with her seedstock animals, Mushrush also uses the TSi to track data on the ranch's 600 commercial bred heifers. She explains, this year she is even using the unit to track the origin of each heifer to see if certain heifers from different locations are more fertile in the environment she ranches in.
Overall, says Mushrush, Gallagher's weighing and data collection systems help her ease marrying EID to the visual ID of animals and make tasks like DNA sampling easier.
"I love the TSi," says Mushrush. "I can hardly work at the chute without it anymore."
Williams notes producers should also consider Gallagher's newest addition to the weigh scale, indicator, and data recorder line - the TW-3 Livestock Weigh Scale and Data Collector/Manager.
"It's a fantastic piece of new equipment that can capture up to three traits at a time," says Williams. "Producers can write notes and set alerts for the animal. Plus, it's compatible with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth and able to connect to devices to upload information to the cloud for effortless transfer."
For producers hesitant to step up their technological game, Williams assures Gallagher has new users covered.
"We work with new users all over the country," says Williams. "We qualify producers and make sure we match him or her up with the right piece of equipment that makes the most sense for their operation. Then we look at the data they want to track and through training, webinars, and online lives session we show them how to take that data, convert it, and import it into their system. We've even done quite a few on-site visits where we work with the customer the first time they use it."
Additionally, Gallagher's support team offers suggestions on animal tagging procedures, answers user questions, handles warranty issues, and trouble shoots technical issues.
"Whatever the customer needs to get going," says Williams.
Mushrush's experience, as well as those of countless other users, says Williams, show Gallagher's tech trio of weighing systems, EID, and data collection devices are truly the definitive record-keeping powerhouse for livestock producers.