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September 09, 1988 - Image 142

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1988-09-09

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

A DAVID ROSENMAN'S
A AIJ110
Au ■ PlUIRCHASEIRS

The same scientists are ex-
perimenting with genetic
selection of chickens in the
hope that their research will
one day yeild a lower-
cholesterol egg.
Israeli childens do not steal
all the limelight, for the coun-
try's cows boast the world
record of milk production —
some 9,000 liters per animal.
The high productivity rate of
both chickens and cows is due
in large part to the sophisti-
cated Israeli-designed com-
puter technology used to run
and monitor poultry and
dairy farms.
This year saw the develop-
ment of several new auto-
mated systems. One of them,
developed by Anat, the com-
puter division of Kibbutz Bror
Hayil, enables a farmer to
monitor every activity of his
herd. Each cow is accorded a
number which is recorded on
an electronic device that it
wears around its neck. Small
electronic transmitters are
then set up at key areas
where the cow passes daily.
The transmitters pick up the
cow's every action and relay it
to a central computer. The
system enables the dairy-herd
manager to know the food in-
take and the milk output of
every cow. It also tells when
a cow's mating time is ap-
proaching and can even help
select a suitable sire for her!
An even more elaborate
computerized mating system
has been introduced in the
north part of he country. A
computer program keeps
track of some 90,000 cows in
the region, noting when each
cow was last artificially in-
seminated and which bull
was the father. One of the
chief advantages of this
system is that it prevents in-
cest among blood-related
animals, thereby preventing
genetic disorders and increas-
ing milk production.
For many years now, Euro-
peans have been able to go to
their supermarkets in winter-
time and buy fresh succulent
fruit that has been grown in
the Arava or Negev desert.
The country's reputation for
desert agriculture is well
known. But if developments
of the last year are any indica-
tion, then Israel may soon be
equally distinguished for its
desert aquaculture.
Aquaculture relies on the
use of natural ponds to raise
a variety of agricultural pro-
duce. It is ideal for a country
that is limited in both fertile
land and fresh water
resources since the water us-
ed to feed the ponds comes
from natural underground
salt water aquifiers that are
very common in desert
regions. This is why ponds are

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