Real time cattle data set to revolutionise the industry

Tracking personal health data through technology has grown in popularity over recent years as the use of smart watches and health apps increase.

And soon, Queensland’s cattle industry will have access to real-time health information and geo-location data on their livestock.

The Smart Ear Tags for Livestock Project, a joint partnership between the Queensland Government, James Cook University, Ceres Tag and CSIRO, is aiming to have the technology available for Australian cattle producers in late 2020.

The Ceres Tag, which gives greater transparency over grazing management allows farmers to locate and monitor their animals to reduce risk and operating costs, improve efficiency and assists with traceability.

“The tag is GPS-enabled, allowing farmers to track the location of individual animals remotely, via Internet of Things (IoT) capability,” said David Smith, Chief Executive Officer of Ceres Tag.

Ceres Tag CEO, David Smith with the Ceres Tag. Image courtesy of CSIRO.

Trials are currently underway to ensure the functionality of the tags in Australia’s unique and harsh conditions.

“Our focus for the next smart tag iteration will be to create a smaller and lighter tag, as well as added functionality such as a temperature sensor, which could alert farmers to illnesses at an earlier stage,” Dr Charmley, Group Leader at CSIRO said.

The next generation of the smart tags is supported by research conducted by James Cook University in Townsville.

“We’re focussed on developing an ultra-low power ear tag capable of lasting years on a single battery charge, with a range of at least 10 kilometres.

“Our aim is to develop a smart tag solution that would potentially last the lifetime of the animal, require less battery life — and in turn reduce cost to the end-users,” Professor Ian Atkinson at James Cook University said.

The Smart Ear Tags for Livestock project has been supported by $1.5 million in funding from the Innovation Partnerships Program as part of the Queensland Government’s $755 million Advance Queensland initiative.

Last updated 04 Sep, 2019
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Australia (CC BY-ND 3.0) ( )

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