Gippsland dairy farmer Kevin Lockett has his herd records just where he wants them - at his fingertips. DataGene’s new mobile phone app, HerdData, gives Mr Lockett access to his herd records anywhere, any time.
For the third year in a row, a member of Elmar’s Jessica cow family has taken out the award for the top BPI award at the Victorian Winter Fair, with this year’s award going to Elmar Lauthority Jessica VG88, owned by the Hore family, Leitchville, Victoria.
The Balanced Performance Index (BPI) Highest Female Award was presented by DataGene in collaboration with Holstein Australia and the Winter Fair Committee.
This week’s release of Australian Breeding Values (ABVs) by DataGene has highlighted a trend that has seen more, young Holstein bulls of high quality coming through the ranks over the past year.
The April ABV release will be the first published by DataGene, having taken on the genetic evaluation roles performed by the Australian Dairy Herd Improvement Scheme (ADHIS) over the past 30 years.
DataGene – the dairy industry’s new organisation to drive herd improvement – is releasing two new tools to make it easier for farmers to use herd records for management decisions.
The HerdData App and the Herd Test Dashboard were previewed at the Herd 17 conference, held in Bendigo last week (22, 23 March). They are the first tools to be released by DataGene since it took over the roles of genetic evaluation (formerly ADHIS) and herd recording software development in 2016.
This first annual general meeting of DataGene last week (16 December), heralded a new era in herd improvement for the Australian dairy industry.
In reporting to the meeting, CEO Dr Matt Shaffer said DataGene presented a rare opportunity for the industry to shape its future by participating in an independent and collaborative organisation that would drive genetic gain and herd improvement through research, development and extension activities.
DataGene, the dairy industry’s new organisation to drive herd improvement, has received overwhelming support with 17 organisations becoming members recently, joining foundation members Dairy Australia, Australian Dairyfarmers and NHIA.
Chair, Ross Joblin, said the 17 new members included herd test centres, genetics companies and breed associations (refer list at end).
WA breeding advisors, Nick and Rod Brasher love talking about dairy bulls and this year they are looking forward to having more lively discussions with their FarmWest clients, with the release of the Good Bulls App.
The Brashers expect the app to be a big hit with dairy farmers because it’s easy to use and accessible anywhere, even if there’s no mobile or internet reception.
After 20 years of declining dairy cow fertility, the genetic trend has turned around and improved every year since 2011. It is now about 5% higher than cows born in 2011, and similar to cows born in 1996.
This finding and others are reported in the 2015 Herd Improvement Report, published by ADHIS and the National Herd Improvement Association of Australia (NHIA).