1986 - Volume #10, Issue #6, Page #26[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Hot flash detector boosts A-1 success rate"Helps catch hard-to-detect heats," says Dr. Everett Colburn, veterinarian and inventor of the new pop-up "Hot Flash" heat detector.
Colburn says a big problem with other visual heat detector methods, such as chalk or dye, is that they're hard to detect at a glance when you've got lots of animals in one place. "Hot Flash detectors are easily visible from a distance and, at 85 to 90% accuracy, they're just as effective or more so than other techniques," he notes.
Hot Flash detectors work on the principle that a cow in heat will be mounted by other cows. The detector consists of a 2x6-in. hard plastic plate that attaches to the cow's back with livestock glue. The plate is fitted with a spring-loaded flexible yellow pin held in place by a plastic "trigger". When another animal mounts the cow, it breaks the trigger, causing the bright yellow pin to stand straight up in the air.
Because at least 100 lbs. pressure is required to trigger the device, animals can not ordinarily accidentally activate the detector. Once activated Colburn says the pin bends easily and therefore won't damage any other animal that might mount.
"Farmers have become more sensitive to the need to detect heat rapidly because it can cost $2 to $3 for every day a cow's open over 115 days. By detecting heat quickly you can also protect animals with sore feet or legs because only a brief mount is required to activate the trigger," notes Colburn.
Hot Flash detectors sell for $1.75 apiece in a carton of 24. In addition to cattle, Colburn is also testing the device on sheep.
For more information, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Hot Flash Livestock Heat Detectors, P.O. Box 307, Gridley, Calif. 95948 (ph 916 846-6212).
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