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Information system for marking and tracking the movement of livestock


The purpose of the information system is to keep records about the livestock in the Republic of Macedonia, as well as to make the tracking of livestock easier. This is of crucial importance, because it provides means for timely reaction and prevention in case of an outbreak of various infectious diseases in livestock. Since there was no such system in the Republic of Macedonia, the EU and other countries have imposed embargoes on the import of meat and livestock when infectious diseases occurred. All of the above, lead to the development of the information system for marking and tracking the movement of livestock.


Brief description of the information system

There are two major entities participating in the marking process: the Main and Regional Centers. In the Republic of Macedonia there is one Main Center and 16 regional centers. The marking of livestock is conducted in the regional centers, by veterinarian professionals, who collect the data from the farms and perform the marking. The data from the regional centers is gathered in the Main Center, where it is verified and analyzed. The Main Center also issues identification cards for each body of stock.

The marking and tracking process begins by collecting the data about the farms in each regional center. The professionals that gather this data fill the forms for farm registration. The initial information about the number, type and race of livestock for each farm, is also recorded in these forms. The data from these forms is input into the information system in the regional centers, and a unique identifier (number) is automatically assigned to each farm. One copy from the farm registration form is taken to the Main Center and another is given to the farm owner. The data about the farms entered in each regional center is replicated to the master database in the Main Center. There it is compared to the hard copy of the form, and verified. In case of an error the Main Center notifies the regional center to correct the data.

After the farms are registered, the Main Center issues orders for printing marks for the livestock. The order contains automatically generated identifiers (numbers) for each region and type of livestock. This order is sent to the printing house, where the marks are printed. After they are printed, the marks are compared to the order and are recorded in the system as "ready to use". The data about the marks in each region are replicated to the regional centers accordingly. After the marks are received, and the data is received in the databases in the regional centers, the professionals are sent to mark the livestock. When on field, the professionals fill the marking forms for each mark with data about the animal in question. The marking form comes in three copies, that go to the owner of the animal, the regional center and one copy to the Main Center. The data from the form is entered in the database at the regional center and then replicated to the master database in the Main Center. The data is validated in the Main Center, and verified or sent back to the regional center for corrections. After the data had been verified, an identification card for each head of livestock is printed and given to the owner of the farm.

Each of the regional centers can issue a request to the Main Center, for printing new marks, if there are new heads of livestock or if some mark is damaged or lost.

The tracking of the livestock is done by issuing permit. The livestock can be transported from one farm to another only if it has a permit. These permits are issued in the regional centers. The data on the movement of livestock is replicated from each regional center to the Main Center.

Software applications / systems developed

Client at the Main Center, client at the regional center, system for database replication (in both directions), between the Main and the regional centers.

Brief description of the application (program) features

The application at the Main Center includes:

  • verification of the data from the regional centers
  • automated reporting of data pending to be verified
  • generation of an order for printing marks
  • checkup and recording of printed marks. The numbers (identifiers) and data from the printed marks is automatically replicated to the regional centers accordingly
  • recording the marks that were ordered, but were not printed
  • generation of forms for livestock marking. For each mark there is a form issued in three copies that are sent to the regional centers, along with the marks
  • verification of the completed forms for marking livestock
  • generation of identification cards for the livestock
  • database search based on various criteria
  • various reports on the movement of livestock, and the current location of each head of stock

The application at the regional center includes:

  • admission of data for each mark
  • entry of data about the marks and the marking forms
  • automated reporting of data that were sent back from the Main Center for a repeated checkup
  • transfer of data to the Main Center
  • issuing requests to the Main Center for printing of new marks
  • database search based on various criteria
  • various reports on the movement of livestock, and the current location of each head of stock

Technical data

Relational database: InterBase Server
Development tool: Delphi 4.0
Number of team members: 3
Development period: 3 months

Here is a snapshot of the database model:

Even though the bi-directional replication solution for InterBase was part of the project, we are working on packaging it into a separate product. Below you can see a snapshot of the simplified object model of the replication system or you can click here to read a small sample code, part of the code for table replication.

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