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Beef Buzz News


Merck Taking BRD Disease Detection to a Whole New Level with Sensehub

Mon, 14 Mar 2022 05:04:55 CDT

Merck Taking BRD Disease Detection to a Whole New Level with Sensehub Merck Animal Health, through its Allflex Livestock Intelligence division, has introduced an illuminating electronic ear tag that can help feedlots spot sick animals quicker. It's called SenseHub Feedlot.


Oklahoma Farm Report's Ron Hays talked with Dr. Jason Nickell, Merck Cattle Veterinarian about Sensehub. "The objective of this technology is centered around the bovine's hard wired ability to conceal disease. And in the post weaning phase of beef production, the most troublesome disease that we deal with is Bovine Respiratory Disease. And because of the ability of the bovine to conceal disease- our current method of diagnosing BRD, which is human observation followed by rectal temperature is not accurate enough to avoid the negative impact of the disease. And so this technology was developed with that in mind to get around theose evoluntionary tendencies."


Sensehub is a thumb-size tag that mounts on the inside of the animal's ear flap and monitors both body temperature and movement of the animal. If either of those readings fall outside of a normal baseline set in the first 48 hours after application, it sends a message to a cloud-based system that the feedlot manager can access. It also triggers a flashing green LED light built into the ear tag that a feedlot pen rider can see, and sort the animal off for treatment.


Bottom line, Sensehub helps reduce the guesswork.


Research at an Oklahoma feedyard showed that monitoring market cattle with the SenseHub Feedlot system significantly reduced mortality due to BRD, compared with traditional pen rider observation. In the first 60 days on feed, BRD mortality was lower for cattle monitored with SenseHub Feedlot, even though disease incidence was higher for that group.


In addition, the Oklahoma trial demonstrated significant labor savings with SenseHub Feedlot. Riders who observed cattle visually entered an average of 18 pens per day, compared with only 5.3 pens per day on average when assisted by SenseHub Feedlot a 71% reduction.


Nickell noted, "The technology is like having another employee monitoring cattle 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Even with 'feedlot' in the product name, the product also has application in backgrounding/stocker operations or cow/calf operations retaining calves.


"Current users of the technology have reported lower treatment costs, as it allows them to pull sick animals earlier and only treat sick animals," Nickell added. "They've also reported less mortality, fewer retreats and improved treatment outcomes due to earlier intervention."

Learn more about the Sensehub technology by going to the dedicated website for it- available here.


And- you can listen to Ron Hays talk in depth about Sensehub with Dr. Jason Nickell by clicking on the Listen Bar Below.


The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.


   


   

Ron Hays talks Sensehub with Dr. Jason Nickell of Merck
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