2013-06-10   facebook twitter rss

Handle your Cattle in Safety with a Gecko Mobile Pen

The Royal Highland Show (Area – Agri, Avenue D, No 124) will see the launch of a unique cattle-handling system, designed specifically to help reduce the risk of death and injury from livestock – which accounts for 10% of all farm fatalities.

This go-anywhere system the Gecko CC1 Mobile Cattle Pen has unique angled gates that enfold and grip like the legs of its nocturnal namesake the Gecko. It is as John Macfarlane of Alnorthumbria Vets says:
“The complete answer to all cattle handling concerns”.

Gecko CC1 Mobile Cattle Pen

Gecko CC1 Mobile Cattle Pen

Engineered to offer optimum safety especially during the calving season, the Gecko CC1 Mobile Cattle Pen is a remote-controlled system designed to be used indoors and outdoors by a single operator. Suitable for handling cattle of all sizes and age, some of the operations that the Gecko can be used for include, calving cows, carrying out caesarean section operations, Mobile pen, moving animals and sucking calves. The rear leg restraints enables you to strap the animal’s leg to prevent the operator getting kicked during suckling or other investigatory works.

Designed by a farmer for farmers, it combines a headstock and remotely operated powered gates that control the cow, and minimise the risk from crushing and kicking to the stocks person. The unit is self-sufficient and its hydraulics are electrically powered and recharged by solar energy. Weighing in at just 1660kg, it is easily transported on the front of a loader vehicle or by tractor to anywhere on the farm. You take the Gecko to the problem – not the problem to the pens - which are always in the wrong location.

The system reduces the time factor on each operation and ensures there is no double handling. You can calve safely in the shed by yourself, and tag the calf in safety too. The Cellular Environment means you are always behind the animal or separated by gates. No halter or rope is needed; it is a clean and safe environment, with the cow safely penned and unable get out. Attached to a loader, and it can then be used to transport the cow and calf out to pasture safely.

Nick Hubb, whose brainchild this is, explains the background to his innovative new cattle handling system

“With 10% of the 436 deaths in agriculture in the last 10 years caused by farm animals, and countless more injuries, most people agree that this is one significant area where safer handing should be a priority.”

“We have completed two years of research and development on prototypes. It has been trialled by people who handle cattle and adjusted with modifications made by our engineers. The final result is a handling system that is easy to use and transport, and reduces stress for the stockperson and the cattle. It is also easy to clean, which helps to minimise biosecurity concerns”

Operating the Gecko in the field couldn’t be simpler. Attach the Gecko to the loader, drive the quad onto the Gecko, and take everything down to cows in the field. Position the Gecko against a fence, open the gates, and take the quad and dog to fetch the cow. Shepherd it into the pen and use the remote control to close the gates. Once the animal is secured the remote controlled hydraulically assisted internal pusher gate pushes and guides the animal into the hydraulically controlled head stock. Also controlled by the hand held remote control.

Commenting on the Gecko system, John Macfarlane of Alnorthumbria Vets who used it to carry out a Caesarean on a cow said: “This is an absolutely marvellous piece of equipment for handling cattle. It gave me complete access to the cow during the operation and there was also provision for the calf. Aggressive cows are totally unpredictable and the Gecko alleviates any concerns the cattle handler may have. One of the major benefits is the ease of handling and transportation of the cow and calf in situ. I feel it is the complete answer to all cattle handling concerns”.

Gecko CC1 Mobile Cattle Pen

Gecko CC1 Mobile Cattle Pen

Nick has worked with many calving cows and gives some further background: “It is suitable for all types of cattle handling, and especially for calving. Continentals are more volatile than some of the traditional breeds, and of course you just cannot predict the cow’s personality. The machine takes the uncertainty of the cow’s nature out of the equation.”


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