InterHerd is a cattle production and health recording system which is
suitable for use in dairy, beef and mixed enterprises. It provides a
secure storage of comprehensive production and health records for each
animal; a day-to-day action lists for the efficient management of herds;
a longer-term analysis of herd performance to identify problems and
their causes; a financial analysis of livestock and other enterprises,
with forward budgets; and it has a user-friendly operation under Windows
95® or Windows NT®
A basic set of event definitions (calving, service, drying-off etc.)
is provided as a default. However, users can add definitions for any
other events required, including numerical recordings such as
measurements of blood parameters. Events can be recorded either as
having taken place or scheduled to take place in the future, and
these scheduled events will appear in action lists.
Event definitions can include scheduled follow-up events so that
when an event is recorded as having taken place, a sequence of
follow-up events will be scheduled. For example, the "service" event
definition can specify that whenever a "service" event is recorded,
a "check oestrus" event will automatically be scheduled for 21 days
later. Events can have different results, associated with different
sequences of follow-up events. For example, a pregnancy diagnosis
could have three different results: positive, negative or doubtful.
A positive result could produce scheduled "drying-off" and "calving"
events at 222 and 282 days (from conception). A negative result
could a scheduled "check oestrus" event, and a doubtful result a
scheduled "pregnancy diagnosis" event.
Costs and drug usage can be recorded for each event. This allows
analysis of costs for each animal, and accounting for usage of
drugs, semen and other inputs at individual animal or herd level.
Stock balances can be maintained with re-ordering at pre-defined
levels. It also allows the automated preparation of itemised
invoices for farmers when the system is being used by service
providers. If required, default costs and drug usage can be defined
for each event result. This reduces the time needed for data
recording, but the default values can be over-ridden in any
InterHerd uses Microsoft Access® tables for the storage of data.
This provides a very powerful and efficient data interface for the
program, and also means that users familiar with the Access database
program have full access to their data for additional analysis and
reporting not provided by the program. InterHerd also has a facility
to export raw data in forms suitable for statistical analysis
InterHerd is multi-lingual. The operating language can be changed at
any time by the user. All of the text used on screens and print-outs
can be edited and saved while the program is running, which allows
authorised users to create translated versions of the program for
any language or dialect (left-to-right text only).
The program can import data from files
provided by milk recording services, and on-farm recording equipment
such as milking parlours, automatic feeders and weighing machines.
The emergence of international standards for livestock data
interchange will greatly facilitate this process.
While the capabilities of the system are very
wide to cover all cattle production systems, it is important to
emphasise that the system can be configured to show only the
information and facilities relevant to a particular application.
Moreover, it can operate with a bare minimum of data, even though it
has the capabilities to store almost any data that might be required
in specialist applications.
The system is very flexible, but access to
configuration options is controlled. Users identify themselves by
name and password, and the system manager can specify the facilities
available to each user.
One data file can contain data from any number
of herds. Therefore reporting and analysis can refer either to a
single herd, or any selection of herds that the user specifies.
Groups and lots of animals can be defined within herds, so analysis
and reports can also be restricted to specified lots or groups.
InterAgri, School of Agriculture, Policy & Development, Earley
Gate, Reading RG6 6AR, United Kingdom
Telephone: 0118 9264888 Fax: 0118 9262431