GPS-enabled livestock monitoring tags reach the Australian commercial market

A GPS-enabled cattle ear tag providing accurate and timely information about livestock location and movement has been commercially released for the first time.

Agtech company mOOvement’s GPS solar-powered ear tags provide real-time tracking of individual animals’ location and promise to provide a wealth of insights for forward-thinking beef producers, and introduce another level of production efficiency across Australia, the company claims.

The tags are now commercially available, direct from the manufacturer, at a cost of $44 per unit, plus a $6 a year subscription fee.

Solar powered GPS ear tags would allow producers greater insights into the way their cattle move and interact with one another, the developers said.

mOOvement has been developing the tags and testing them with producers across broadacre operations and they are now the first commercially available monitoring ear tag in the market.

The system includes the GPS ear tags themselves, an antenna to receive the GPS locations, and the software that enables monitoring and analysis of the data that’s provided.

After a lengthy period researching, analysing, building and improving mOOvement’s tags and software, it was an exciting step to get the product into the market and to make it a part of cattle operations all over the world, one of the company’s founders, Pieter Vogels said.

Using a solar-powered ear tag, each animal’s location could be monitored in real time, he said.

“This means the computer in the office, or the user’s phone gets an alert if an animal is stationary for too long, or if they get through a fence into the neighbour’s property.”

The tags communicate using a local network that is set up on each property and doesn’t require phone or internet coverage. This technology, called LoRa, was ideal for regional and remote operations, Mr Vogels said.

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