TRACKER programs available through PCDART software

On-farm dairy herd management record keeping programs provide easy access to cow and herd data for making day-to-day decisions.

On-farm dairy herd management record keeping programs provide easy access to cow and herd data for making day-to-day decisions. In addition, these programs summarize data to help monitor and evaluate herd performance over time.

PCDART, available through Dairy Records Management Services (DRMS), is one of the herd management software programs used on Michigan dairy farms. PCDART has a variety of features used to sort through the vast amount of data recorded for each cow and heifer. The most recent enhancements to PCDART are the TRACKER programs, including Activity Tracker, Heifer Tracker, Conception Tracker and Maternity Tracker.

Here are some highlights of key functions offered by each TRACKER program.

ACTIVITY TRACKER: A comprehensive summary of routine cow activities (cows calved, pregnant, sold, died and dried off) and user-defined health events can be accessed by month of occurrence or days in milk of the cows. Subgroups of cows also can be selected based on lactation number and date that the activity occurred. Total counts of animals for the given activity and time frame are reported in a frequency table. For each category in the frequency table, a list of animals can be generated.

HEIFER TRACKER: The herd’s heifer inventory is summarized by five age-range categories (six-month intervals from 0-24 months of age plus 25 months or older). A variety of management indicators can be tracked using this program. Indicators include: percent heifers that survived to a given age, age at first breeding, first-service conception rate, and number of heifers confirmed pregnant in the most recent month.

CONCEPTION TRACKER: Reproductive performance of cows or heifers can be evaluated by month of activity. The reports can be generated using criteria that describe the status of the cow and the breeding activity, such as service number, days in milk, lactation number, or age at breeding for heifers. The summary table lists number of animals bred, number pregnant, number open and conception rate.

MATERNITY TRACKER: This PCDART function examines activity related to the calving of cows or heifers in the herd. Items reported include number of calves born alive, percent of calves that were heifers, percent of calvings that produced twins and percent of calvings that were difficult births.

To obtain more information about PCDART and the TRACKER programs, contact your DHI herd technician, your service affiliate, or Dairy Records Management Systems.

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