An Australian-first app, NSW DPI’s Drought Feed Calculator, has gained national and global traction with an estimated 9000 downloads since its release in 2014.
NSW DPI sheep development officer Geoff Casburn said the universal appeal of the livestock feed app was reflected in the number of downloads recorded across various countries around the world.
‘‘Designed for use in the paddock, the app is popular with producers who use it to develop well-informed and cost-efficient feed strategies,’’ Mr Casburn said.
‘‘NSW farmers managing livestock following recent bushfires have benefited from the app, which was used to calculate feed rations to maintain stock.’’
He said the app could calculate the total amount of feed required per head and for a mob of animals, over a selected period of time, and it could provide estimated energy, protein and dry matter values for 71 different feeds, including hay, grain, silage and alternative feeds.
‘‘Feed quality varies and the Drought Feed Calculator really comes into its own when producers can use feed test results.
‘‘Laboratory tests, such as those available from the NSW DPI Feed Quality Service, give producers the most accurate value of available feed.’’
In drought situations, producers can use the app to quickly work out minimum feed requirements for animals with a range of nutritional needs.
Users can easily assess the value of different feeds by comparing the results for up to three feeds, as well as mixed rations.
■The app is free to download from the App Store or Google Play by searching ‘Drought Feed Calculator’.