Data Driven Dairy Decision For Farmers (4D4F) aims at developing a network for dairy farmers, dairy technology suppliers, data companies, dairy advisors, veterinarians and researchers to improve the decision making on dairy farms based on data generated by sensors.

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Introducing automatic heat detection on a Swedish farm

Author: Annica Hansson (Växa) - Date: February 7, 2019

Rolf and his son Emil run a dairy farm at Edenberga in the southern part of Sweden. It consists of 100 dairy cows, a mix of two thirds of Swedish Holstein cow and one third Swedish red. The work regarding heat detection is all done manually during heat observations. Statistics from the Swedish cow data base show potential of improvement regarding fertility result.

Fever Tags for early detection of disease in calves

Author: Ben Thompson (IfA) - Date: January 29, 2019

Worgret farm is a dairy farm situated in Wareham (Dorset) with 280 Holstein-Friesian cows, calving all year round and rearing their own replacements. The milking herd graze during the summer months and are housed in the winter. The farm is owned and managed by John Baggs and partner Sophie.

John Baggs pictured with some his calves wearing fever tags.

Fever Tags

Finding lost cows with GPS trackers

Author: Olivier Guiot (ILVO) - Date: January 25, 2019

Kris and Geert operate a beef dairy farm called Saeftingherhof at the border crossing between Belgium and the Netherlands. From May untill October, the cows graze in a nature reserve area of 250 hectares, comprised of a delta of many mud flats and salt marshes with trenches that fill up twice a day with the salty Schelde water. However, one major obstacle of hectare natural grazing system is that cows can get lost or stuck in narrow trenches, and run the risk of drowning. Especially in those conditions, a GPS location tracker would be very useful.

New technologies for better claw health

Author: Kristine Piccart & Anneleen De Visscher (ILVO) - Date: January 23, 2018

Lameness and claw lesions in dairy cattle have far-reaching consequences, in terms of farm economics and animal welfare. It has been estimated that lameness costs no less than €53 per cow per year. That’s a loss of more than € 3.400 per year on an average dairy farm with 65 cows. Furthermore, accurate detection and timely treatment of lame cows is still a serious bottleneck in practice.

4D4F event: Data for better yields

Author: Jef Aernouts (Farmdesk) - Date: January 17, 2019

This 4D4F event, held on December 12, was the last session for dairy cattle farmers organized by Wim Govaerts & CO and ILVO. In previous sessions, the focus was mostly on sensors. In this session, Flemish farmers were brought together to discuss the use of the most essential data of every dairy farm: milk data.