12 February 2016 | Online since 2003

Farmex director Nick Bird dies aged 60



16 January 2013 14:38:27|News,Pigs

Farmex director Nick Bird dies aged 60


Nick Bird, director and co-owner of Reading-based control and monitoring specialists, Farmex Ltd, died suddenly from a heart condition on 13th January 2013, aged 60.
Bird was one of the pig industry’s best known ‘backroom boys’ and helped to develop the control and monitoring systems which are widely used on pig farms throughout the UK and abroad.
Many farmers have cause to be grateful for his friendly and expert advice when sorting out technical ventilation problems over the phone.
Following post-graduate research, Nick, together with Hugh Crabtree, co-founded Farmex when it was formed in 1980, with Reading University’s Jeff Owen, head of buildings in the engineering section, and others.
There, he helped develop the first microprocessor-based ventilation control system for pig farmers and this paved the way for the revolutionary Dicam (Digital Interactive Control and Monitoring) system which borrowed microchip technology from the car industry.
Twenty years later it remains the sector’s most commonly used device for temperature control.
Dicam can record and store incredible quantities of information and Nick used his sharp mind to analyse this. As a result he was the first person to discover, objectively, what pigs did ‘after hours’, when the pigman closed the door for the night. Interesting behavioural patterns emerged.
This research led to the company promoting real-time data logging, allowing pig farmers to remotely collect, analyse and act upon vital performance information from their piggeries in real time.
Nick became a world authority on interpreting these data from commercial pig production and his work on water use by the growing pig is unique. He was a prolific producer of papers and articles and often did so with a great down-to-earth sense of humour.
"Nick was an analyst and accomplished — problem solver — a clever and original thinker," commented Farmex co-director, Hugh Crabtree.
"He has been the mainstay of Farmex’s technical support and knowledge transfer. With his passing there has been a huge loss of knowledge which will be felt not only by the company but also by the industry at large."
He leaves his wife, Katie, and two daughters Olivia and Jessica.

Download





0 Comment


Name

Please enter your name


Email

Comment

Please enter your comment


Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.


Comments

No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

World News

Greece | 12 February 2016
Government braces for farmers' descent on Athens

Hundreds of farmers from various parts of Greece are expected to descend on Athens on Friday to protest against planned increases to their tax and social security contributions but the government hope...


United Kingdom | 12 February 2016
Payments row Scottish government minister faces farmers

Scottish government rural affairs secretary Richard Lochhead is expected to face tough questions about payments to farmers later. The minister is due to address the NFU Scotland annual general meet...


Canada | 12 February 2016
Cage-free eggs have drawbacks says farm animal welfare expert

The push for cage-free eggs by fast food companies is not necessarily the best option, according to a farm animal welfare expert at the Atlantic Veterinary College. Michael Cockram at UPEI's Sir J...


France | 12 February 2016
France's Hollande says to cut farmers' payroll taxes

French President Francois Hollande said on Thursday that the government would reduce payroll taxes to help struggling farmers. Prime Minister Manuel Valls "will announce before February 17 a new de...


New Zealand | 12 February 2016
Sheep farmers look for answers to slow the decline

Sheep farmers can't seem to catch a break at the moment. Pat Deavoll delves deep into why sheep numbers have declined. The message is clear; the demise of sheep farming in South Canterbury reflects...



Trending Now

Viewed
Discussed

Farms and Land for sale


Holiday Rentals search



Top stories you may have missed
Username
Password