The crush-chute gate is a newly available device attached to the sides of a crush, which opens as cattle, sheep or horses pass through, and then closes behind them.
Having won the top prize in the Tullamore Show national inventions competition for Joseph Hyland of Cattle Crush Designs, Portarlington, Co Laois, it is now available commercially (see crushchutegate.com).
It prevents animals from going backwards, and can reduce injury or accidents.
Fully adjustable to suit all sizes of all animals, it is a hands-free device, and is offered with a 10-year guarantee.
The same manufacturer/inventor won a second prize in the labour-saving devices section of the Tullamore Show competition.
This hydraulic crush gate opens and closes at the touch of a finger.
It can be powered from a tractor or power pack, and has an attachment for lifting animals’ feet.
An optional hydraulic grab attachment pushes animals forward into the crush gate.
Second prize overall in the Tullamore Show competition went to John Fogarty, Galmoy, Co Kilkenny for his pipe lift — a device for lifting a suction hose from a slatted tank to the side of the vacuum tanker.
Third prize went to Caroline O’Neill, Bandon, Co Cork, for the O’Neill cluster dipper with built-in steps.
This mobile stand makes cluster dipping easier; in a 100-cow herd, it can save the milker bending over to dip clusters 180 times per milking.
Now available for €325, it can also be used for standing on when tail clipping, tail painting, or injecting, and can also be used as a table (see www.ballinadee.com)
The best student exhibit in the Tullamore Show competition was Grainne O’Dwyer’s power-take-off safety shut-off.
The Urlingford, Co Tipperary student’s photoelectric sensor shuts off the PTO when a person comes within 0.4m of the revolving shaft.
It will not restart until the driver gets back on the tractor.
The competition included a home, leisure and building inventions section.
Molloy Precast Products of Tullamore, Co Offaly won this section with a new device designed to eliminate many common problems associated with domestic septic tank percolation systems.
The winning labour-saving device was a tractor-mounted attachment for shearing firewood logs and splitting timber logs, invented by Séamus Drumm, Geashill, Co Offaly.
Third prize, and the student prize, for labour-saving devices both went to Marie Martin, Dingle, Co Kerry for her safe- scrub sprayer — a loader-mounted attachment for an existing sprayer, activated from inside the tractor, designed to make spraying weeds safer, healthier and cheaper.