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Investigating the suitability of electronic identification in livestock
  1. Toby Mottram, PhD
  1. eCow, Design Hub, 13 Rankine House, Port Dundas Business Park, 100 Borron Street, Glasgow G4 9XG
  1. e-mail: toby{at}

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THE radio frequency identity device (RFID) was first developed for agricultural use in the 1970s as a collar system for identifying cows for automated feeding and milking systems. The full potential for these devices has been realised in other industries where the location and tracking of relatively low value items is routine.

Within cattle husbandry, a forthcoming publication by Bell and others (2011), shows how an ear tag RFID can provide an automatic mobility score replacement for the manual inspection. The use of implanted devices remains controversial in animal husbandry and the Sheep Veterinary Society in the UK is quoted in this …

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