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Cattle rustlers beware....

Cattle brands are a big deal. They have been historically and they are today. A brand on an animal identifies who owns it, and in many cases, the history of the animal as it is sold from one ranch to another. Keeping track of brands and the owners of those brands is a huge challenge in major ranching states like Texas, Montana, Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska, and New Mexico.

For example, in New Mexico alone, there are nearly 29,000 brands representing thousands of working ranches, each of which may use several different brands. Brands are currently kept in huge books that are referenced to locate the exact drawing of a brand and the ranch that owns it. This is terribly time consuming and vulnerable to misinterpretation and error.

The challenge is already huge, but will grow even larger as federal livestock identification regulations take effect in the next couple of years. There is also a great deal of pressure to develop a system that can track the origin of ill animals within 48 hours.

A New Mexico software developer, Nickel Brand Software, may have a good part of the answer to the cattle identification and tracking problem.

Nickel Brand Software allows a user to find the ownership of a branded animal within minutes, not days. The digital livestock identification software allows the user to either sketch the brand on a hand held computer palm pad or to scan the brand with a hand scanner. The brand database is then accessed and the brand owner is quickly identified. Click here for more general information. Click here for more details about the software.