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IoT and Agriculture: Gaining New Efficiency and Cost Savings through Better Cattle Management

Learn how cattle tracking systems enable farmers to increase heard output and overall wellness. 

Cattle tracking systems enable farmers to monitor and manage the condition and location of animals anywhere and at any time. Tracking systems enable farmers to monitor an animal’s activity level, health and other key behavioral factors to increase herd output and overall wellness.

Market Potential 

Agriculture’s cattle management industry is included in the expanding Internet of Things (IoT), which is driving new livestock practices and efficiencies – and cost savings. 

The focus on livestock monitoring and disease detection, adoption of IoT and Artificial Intelligence (AI) by dairy farmers, and the substantial cost savings associated with livestock monitoring management are key factors driving this growth. 

An increase in the cattle population among dairy farmers in developing countries also has led to new revenue-generating opportunities.

Solution Building Blocks 

End-to-end cattle tracking solutions includes four primary building blocks:

1. Cattle sensors (in-ear or collars).  
2. Gateway mounted on poles, connecting wireless data to the network and then to the Internet/cloud; the gateway is powered by outdoor-rated PoE Injectors.
3. Network and cloud storage. 
4. Monitoring and analytic solution. 

Benefits of Cattle Tracking Solutions

● Monitor Activity – ‘Smart collars’ can track animals’ habitual movements during the day and night. They alert livestock managers of breaks in patterns, indicating potential sickness or injury. Also, monitoring the distance covered by animals or how far they’ve moved from the herd provides valuable information.

● Monitor Temperature – Monitoring animals’ temperatures enables livestock managers to predict and possibly prevent illness. 

● Monitor Location – GPS allows livestock managers to reduce animal loss by carefully tracking animals wherever they go, as well as whenever they move. Smart collar also alert you when an animal enters or leaves an area.

● Capture Data – Trends can be monitored including repetitive behavior in animals with algorithms that analyze information from collars and generate notifications when an anomaly and/or important event is detected.

Microchip’s Total Solution

Off-the-shelf Power over Ethernet (PoE) systems save development time and include safety certification, can be rebranded, are outdoor rated with surge protection, and are interoperable with all IEEE 802.3af/at gateways. Click to learn more:

Microchip’s Low-Range Low-Power End Node Solution

SAM R34/R35 Low Power LoRa® Sub-GHz System-in-Package Family

PoE Injectors

PD-9001GO-ET: Outdoor rated IEEE 802.3at PoE Injector 

Sani Ronen, Aug 27, 2020