There are new things on the horizon of health and disease recording at the Irish Cattle Breeding Federation (ICBF).

According to the ICBF, in January it sent an email more than 900 HerdPlus members requesting they fill out an online survey on health and disease recording and then sent materials to capture health and disease events in real-time.

“These sheets will be used as reminders to farmers to input the data into a new web screen that is being developed by ICBF IT team or into their farm software to be shared with the ICBF.

“128 dairy, 99 beef and 19 dual farmers, that’s 26 per cent of farmers contacted,  filled out the survey which was one of the requirements to be in the programme along with allowing their veterinarian access to the data they record.”

The third requirement is that they agree to communication with the ICBF team about the programme so that it knows what works or doesn’t work in the pilot.

In addition, the second item that has recently been developed by the ICBF is a congenital defects survey.

This is based on a head-to-tail assessment that the French use so that we can get the best and most accurate information for deformed calves as they are born,”  it said. This survey is linked directly to the ICBF ‘record events’ page and requests farmers take a picture of the animal and if they would provide a hair or tissue sample for DNA.