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Wintec’s heat detection smartphone app hits the market

Press Release: Wintec

Wintec’s heat detection smartphone app hits the market

Hamilton, New Zealand - Waikato Institute of Technology’s (Wintec) research team at AgResearch’s Tokanui Research Farm is helping dairy farmers decrease the cost of missing cows on heat with the launch of their new android app.

Wintec’s Agritec Heat Detection app went live this month, giving dairy farm workers a smart and quick reminder of what to look for when cows are on heat and ready for artificial insemination.

Free to download from Google Play, the app has plenty of images and videos to show the signs to look for in heat detection.

Wintec’s Agritec educator Dr Debbie Care is expecting the tool to be popular with farm managers keen to teach staff the signs of cows on heat.

“This is a really great on-farm tool because the window of opportunity for insemination is so narrow - just 24 hours. If it’s missed then the farmer has to wait three weeks for another opportunity,” Debbie said.

Missed heats are also expensive, costing more than $200 per cow, she said.

“This great little app is new to the market and it’s definitely good timing. Uptake has been steady with more than 70 downloads already but once word gets out it will pick up,” Debbie said.

The app has been farm tested and developed in consultation with key industry professionals, and once downloaded, can be used without an internet connection

“It takes the user through the visual and behavioural cues so they can detect heat with accuracy.”

Dr Care says other apps, including one to help with ensuring milk quality, are in the pipeline.

The app technology is just one example of real-world solutions born out of Wintec’s wider research and development programme.

“Wintec researchers are close to the market, easy to work with and grounded in the real world. Myself and Wintec’s other researchers work to solve some of industry’s biggest challenges by gaining new knowledge, pushing boundaries and delivering high impact results,” said Dr Care.

Dr Care is one of Wintec’s five full-time researchers who are working closely with a wide number of commercial organisations throughout New Zealand.