Dairy fertility specialist Dr Dan Ryan has secured a contract to provide ultrasound scanning and fertility services for 15,000 cows in southeast Australia from the comfort of his own base in Co Cork.
Under the revolutionary deal, the Fermoy-based fertility expert will remotely diagnose pregnancy, fertility and health issues from scans taken by technicians over 17,000km away in Australia.
The 15,000 cows belong to a number of herds located between Sydney and Melbourne that are owned by a private consortium.
"The first contact with this consortium came about through my website 365cows.com and some Irish people working for them," explained Dr Ryan. "They were very interested in our health management plans."
The contract is set to commence next autumn and the Australian technicians who will physically carry out the scan on the herds will travel to Ireland for training with Dr Ryan this summer.
The fertility expert is currently working with Enterprise Ireland, Teagasc, ICBF and a number of universities to further develop the technology needed for remote ultrasound scanning.
Fertility, nutrition and health research is also taking place on a 400-cow dairy unit in Portlaoise.
"The idea is to develop a facility where ultrasound scans could be taken anywhere in the world to generate a full herd fertility report," he explained.