NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Flock recording software  (Read 4872 times)

ae3052

  • Joined Jul 2013
Flock recording software
« on: January 31, 2014, 12:21:49 pm »
Just wondering what software people who are performance recording sheep are using.  Currently using bits of paper that get misplaced and Microsoft Excel.  Would like to record individual ewe performance and also the performance of her lambs.  So far I like the look of the shearwell programme.........

Thanks in advance
Voss Electric Fence

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2014, 12:37:21 pm »
I just use a spreadsheet. With only a couple of dozen, I can't justify buying software

mowhaugh

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Scottish Borders
    • Facebook
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2014, 01:30:35 pm »
I am not performance recording, but I use Shearwell Farmworks for everything - holding register, medicine book etc. etc.  and it is very easy to get your info back out!

The very best thing in my opnion is the quality of the support you get from Shearwell, any issues, you phone up, speak to Simon and he fixes it.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2014, 01:48:04 pm »
I use a Rolodex card index system.  It works instantly and during power cuts too!

Hillview Farm

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Surrey
  • Proud owner of sheep and Llamas!
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2014, 02:01:48 pm »
I am not performance recording, but I use Shearwell Farmworks for everything - holding register, medicine book etc. etc.  and it is very easy to get your info back out!

The very best thing in my opnion is the quality of the support you get from Shearwell, any issues, you phone up, speak to Simon and he fixes it.


Roughly how much money are we talking?

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2014, 02:34:24 pm »
I use a Rolodex card index system.  It works instantly and during power cuts too!

 ;D ;D :thumbsup:

mowhaugh

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Scottish Borders
    • Facebook
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2014, 05:41:41 pm »
The software is £475.  We also have a hand held stock recorder, which is £1,525 and includes the software.  This means you can input whatever you need outdoors by tag, for instance say you are going to dose for fluke with X product, then scan tag of each sheep you've done.  Or record births by scanning the mums tag, then scanning the lamb's/lambs' tag in the lambing function (having already said which tup the sheep has gone to).

We are finding it very useful.  We applied for an SRDP grant and also got the three way automatic drafting crate, and a new sheep shed, which isn't actually up yet, although the founds are in.  The grant covered 60%, and we were encouraged to apply for the Shearwell kit too on the basis it made the whole proposal more likely to be accepted as it showed we were taking our business forward (although we are, I'm not personally sure wanting that particular kit was the best evidence, but there you go).  We probably would have bought the stock recorder ourselves, but not the crate.  But we desperately needed another shed, and it was cheaper to pay 40% of the whole thing than 100% of the shed if we'd not got the grant.  Not that we actually have yet, just a large short term bank loan.

The process for recording weights and anything else you'd want to are very straightforward.

I don't know where you are, but if you are anywhere near the Borders you'd be welcome to come and have a look.  I think the best thing to do is to think exactly what you would want your new system to do, then ask those specific questions of the manufacturers.

Tim W

  • Joined Aug 2013
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2014, 05:55:22 pm »
I use the shearwell system and have done for the last 6 years. Have the psion and full EID on all animals but I would say its a bit overkill unless you have lots of sheep. For me with 1400 lambs a year it's essential
I can track animal performance from birth through to death including kill specs that get reported back from the abattoir --- 
I have seen other systems (Border software springs to mind) and many of them are excellent---you just get used to whichever system you have

For smaller outfits I would recommend an excel sheet


mowhaugh

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Scottish Borders
    • Facebook
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #8 on: January 31, 2014, 06:14:22 pm »
Tim W, at the moment we just get our data back from the abattoir as a PDF, we have only just started using the system in November, but for next season's lambs we plan to make better use of it to record kill data and compare to feeding rates and so on, what format should I request the data in so it can be uploaded into Farmworks?  The vast majority of our lambs go store, but it is important for us to try to be better at working out if the extra input we put into the 350 or so that go fat is worthwhile.  I suspect it probably isn't.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2014, 07:12:47 pm »
When - if we do actually get the eid back on the kill sheet from the abattoir, then it would be worth our starting to think about a reader and some software.

We've used electronic tags for lambs going off deadweight from the start of their being available, and it is only our last few batches, the first going to Tesco Finest (North Country), on which we've had the eid back on the kill sheet.  We've already learned a lot, and that was just with lambs tagged as they leave the farm, so all we knew was how we rated and weighed them on their feet and how they looked to the abattoir. 

Much as we would love to be able to relate performance to tup, we are still very dubious about applying tags to young lambs, or indeed to any lamb in the summer when there are flies about and the silly little things (the lambs, that is, not the flies) can make themselves bleed without having great big plastic tags to rub on things. ::)   We did try some temporary tags on newborn lambs, so we would know which tup they were from when we came to put their permanent tag in later, but firstly the temporary tags didn't last long enough, and secondly we remain undecided about the additional intervention - we don't catch a lot of our earlier lambs, some of them will not be handled at all until they get drafted.  We may do better simply keeping the offspring of one tup together as a batch rather more rigidly than we do at present - and eid would add no additional information therefore.

 :thinking:

So it's good to hear the experiences of others, it's all good input  :thumbsup:
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Tim W

  • Joined Aug 2013
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #10 on: January 31, 2014, 11:01:46 pm »
Tim W, at the moment we just get our data back from the abattoir as a PDF, we have only just started using the system in November, but for next season's lambs we plan to make better use of it to record kill data and compare to feeding rates and so on, what format should I request the data in so it can be uploaded into Farmworks?  The vast majority of our lambs go store, but it is important for us to try to be better at working out if the extra input we put into the 350 or so that go fat is worthwhile.  I suspect it probably isn't.

In theory you should be able to get the info sent direct to NLMD but this depends on the abattoir ---which in my experience is not very reliable! Every time I send lambs to Jaspers, Launceston I request the individual IDs to be linked to weights/grades and that this is sent to NLMD , this has to be done via the agent and the processor and directly to the abattoir to have a chance of getting this done

I understand that some supermarkets are putting this as a must do on the list for their suppliers but it will take a while to filter through


mowhaugh

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Scottish Borders
    • Facebook
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #11 on: February 01, 2014, 03:59:46 pm »
Thanks Tim. I am struggling with NLMD, I have registered, selected to back up to there, then tried to find my data but haven't found it. Probably need to ring Simon at Shearwell again, the poor man is going to think I am stalking him.

Tim W

  • Joined Aug 2013
Re: Flock recording software
« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2014, 04:13:53 pm »
Thanks Tim. I am struggling with NLMD, I have registered, selected to back up to there, then tried to find my data but haven't found it. Probably need to ring Simon at Shearwell again, the poor man is going to think I am stalking him.

You may find it is down to the abattoir failing to forward the infomation

 

Using Flock Software

Started by nutterly_uts

Replies: 3
Views: 1220
Last post October 03, 2015, 09:45:03 pm
by mowhaugh
Recording a dead sheep

Started by charls

Replies: 4
Views: 1446
Last post September 04, 2014, 07:15:11 pm
by twizzel
Recording sheep data

Started by Bramham Wiltshire Horns

Replies: 3
Views: 1130
Last post September 05, 2016, 11:09:28 am
by Foobar
Performance recording in small flocks

Started by Foobar

Replies: 5
Views: 1660
Last post January 28, 2015, 09:58:01 am
by Ladygrey
recording fallen stock on ARAMS

Started by devonlad

Replies: 7
Views: 1369
Last post March 14, 2017, 07:41:30 am
by TheSmilingSheep

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Little Peckers

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2019. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS