A mobile cattle crush designed by Massey University student Charlotte Pedersen will allow farmers to deal with animal illness or injuries immediately.
Pedersen, 22, who grew up on a Hawke's Bay dairy farm, talked to farmers and veterinarians before designing the crush. They told her of daily challenges with diseases such as laminitis, which affects the hoofs of horses and cattle.
"Essentially, poor treatment can lead to less efficient production from a lame cow and to the cost of re-treating cows or having to dispose of a good milking cow prematurely," she said.
The crush could also be used for tagging stock, pregnancy testing and general health care for cattle.
Unlike existing crushes, it could be easily assembled by the user. It had rotating hinges to allow its panels to swing open to give the farmer access to the cow or to multiple drafting options.
Another labour-saving device from Massey's industrial design course is an electronic drenching unit by sheep and beef farmer's daughter Holly Gaskin.
It is aimed at improving the performance of sheep drenching by reducing a farmer's pain and discomfort during the repetitive task.
"I wanted farmers to be able to work smarter and not harder, and reduce stress on them mentally and physically during the busiest periods when they are tired and more likely to get hurt or muck up," she said.
- © Fairfax NZ News
Is Federated Farmers president Bruce Wills right to claim that farmers are doing their bit for the environment?Related story: Farmers doing their bit for environment