Individual Animal Management at work in Kenya.

Individual Animal Management (IAM) in Kenya! Who would of thought? It’s happening and they are measuring production from it. Fortunately (or unfortunately) they need herdsmen to stay with the stock every day to avoid predation from lions, hyena and stock theft. Stock are locked up in ‘Boma’s (portable yards) every night. Due to this reason, it is fairly routine for commercial farms to mark calves at birth and most document genetic relationship with mother and father.

Each calf will get a card where records will be kept for future joining and calving dates. Cows are culled on inter calving period making sure they are not taking too long to get back in calf. The potential for these farms to do some further measurements is a realistic one to improve profitability.

The thing that has been most interesting to me Over the past two weeks is that regardless of the industry, the best farms are measuring production. It comes back to the theory that if you don’t measure, it is hard to really know what the biggest factor is that is limiting improvement – apart from making a fairly educated guess.

Below is a group of pictures collected over the past two weeks in South Africa and Kenya and all have one thing in common – all measure to manage.


What I’ve been asking myself as a result of this common observation between industries – how do we make our inputs work for us? My conclusion is – through accurate and relevant measuring we can select for efficiency.

A New Zealander showed me a picture of two mobs of sheep and asked me which one I thought earn’t him $20,000 more – visually I couldn’t tell and it emphasised how important this concept is. If we are going to have sustainable farming businesses into the future – inputs need to be turned into outputs as efficiently as possible.

To finish up, some of the animals of Kenya that have to exist together – and this is a only a snap shot!


Heading to Russia – will be interesting to see if the trend continues……..

How exciting is agriculture!!?


2 thoughts on “Individual Animal Management at work in Kenya.

  1. You had me at hello Brahman haha! Photos are awesome Han, looks like you are having a ball, I can’t wait to learn more about what you are leaning. Met some ripping people at the PPP conference in NZ and have some very rad people for you to go and visit if you like when you get back, some really progressive stuff going on! I was like your little PA, getting all the news for you! Yey! They are all lovely and looking forward to sharing with you!


    • Sounds great, would love to catch the contacts you have made in NZ. Hope your presentation went well. The cattle are Boran cattle. Originated in Northern Kenya for their low maintenance characteristics. Smaller than the Brahman and more suited to their conditions. You can look them up at if your interested. Been an extremely interesting trip – talk soon :-)))))

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