Non Technical Summary
While the initial application will be for cattle, the systems developed in this project will be applicable to feeders used for other domestic species including sheep, goats, and domestic hogs. In addition, the systems developed could be used to control gates or other access for animals or objects that are tagged with radio frequency identification systems. This project is designed to increase the economic benefits of specific husbandry practices, improve the competitiveness of U.S. livestock production, enhance the competitiveness of a small, rural employer, and develop a leading technology that is likely to become an industry standard. Quality of life in rural Oklahoma will be enhanced if 3C Cattle Feeders, Inc. can employ more people. 3C Cattle Feeders currently has 12 employees in Mill Creek, Oklahoma.
Animal Health Component
Research Effort Categories
Goals / Objectives
The purpose of this phase I SBIR project is to design, develop and test new and improved radio frequency based control systems for cattle creep feeding equipment. This will allow access to the feed only to animals with the appropriate RF ear tag for which the feed is intended so that wildlife, particularly feral hogs and deer, can be excluded from the feed source. The project will result in a marketable and affordable technology to improve the efficiency of feed use in the cattle business.
The power to control access to the feed will be supplied by a solar-energy based device so that it can be powered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. By using such a control system, the health of domestic species will be improved because incentives for both feral hogs and deer to be near livestock feed sources will be eliminated and the interaction between domestic species and wildlife can be reduced, minimizing the risk of diseases from invasive species. Thus, the protection and safety of the Nations agriculture and food supply can be improved at a nominal cost to the rancher. By leveraging and using commercially available technologies, the project will improve the productivity and quality of cattle.