PLM Research Projects
Water-Based Livestock Methane Mitigation
The ‘Water-Based Livestock Methane Mitigation’ project will examine a range of methane-reducing compounds determine if they can be safely and effectively be delivered to cattle via automated water systems to decrease enteric methane emissions. The compounds will be delivered in the same way as fluoride is added to human drinking water or as additives are mixed in fuel for engine efficiency – measured doses dissolved in the water supply via automated technology.
Minimizing calf loss in Northern Beef Herds
Calf loss costs the northern Australian beef industry more than $53ma year. This project will use precision livestock devices to monitor cows before and after calving to better understand how behaviour impacts calf loss in northern Australia. It uses GPS to track distance travelled, accelerometers to measure activity levels and thermometers to detect heat stress. This information will allow researchers to understand how environmental factors like shade, wild dogs and water availability impact cow behaviour and what it means for calf survival. This research is one part of a wider project called ‘CalfAlive’, a collaboration between University of Queensland, Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation and more than a dozen producer partners across northern Australia.
Increasing the uptake of performance-recording genetics through automated livestock management systems
The future for genetic improvement in northern Australian beef herds requires more cattle to have more accurate, more frequent and more reliable performance measures. But in the extensive beef production systems typical of northern Australia there are significant costs associated with performance recording – this means that genetic improvement programs need to capture data at lower costs and with less labour.
This project is consolidating a range of technologies, algorithms and data management systems that have the potential to be used to automatically record cattle performance. This will provide the starting point for cattle producers to begin exploring a whole of business approach to automated data capture and analyses tools.
Automated livestock management systems (ALMS) for Argentinian Production Systems
CQUniversity is working with Argentina’s National Institute of Agricultural Technology (INTA) and Latin American producer group CREA to trial the DataMuster walk-over-weigh system in Argentinian cattle operations to support improvements in on-farm productivity.
The project has identified enhancements to ALMS in order to customise these systems to Latin American beef production systems, while also building the capability of INTA to service the Argentinian industry in the area of ALMS.
Throughout the research project CQU has been working with Argentinean producers to participate in the trial and promoting trial results to the Argentinian industry.