When you buy or sell calves your NAIT and TBfree obligations are the same as for other cattle, although some things are helpful to know.

If you're buying calves

Confirm with the seller:

  • that they have completed an Animal Status Declaration (ASD) form — you'll receive this at the point of sale
  • that the calves are tagged and registered in NAIT
  • what their TB status is.

When the calves arrive on your property, you need to:

  • read their NAIT tag numbers, visually or with a scanner
  • confirm the receiving movement in NAIT within 48 hours, or create the receiving movement if the sender hasn't.

If you're selling calves

Before you send your calves off-farm, make sure they're tagged correctly and registered in NAIT. Calves usually have NAIT birth tags — using these in numerical order will make it easier to enter them in NAIT.

All calves must be:

  • tagged and registered before they are 180 days old or before they move off your farm for the first time — whichever comes first
  • registered in NAIT within 7 days of being tagged.

It's an offence not to tag and register your calves within these timeframes.

Some animals are exempt from tagging. For example, bobby calves under 30 days of age going directly to slaughter from the property they were born on don't need to be tagged. If they move to another property then you must tag and register them first.

You also need to:

  • find out the NAIT location number of the buyer
  • prepare an ASD, which includes information about the TB status of your animals and a declaration to the livestock transporter
  • create a sending movement in NAIT, within 48 hours of the day they were sent (if you're not selling through an accredited saleyard).

If you’re moving animals from a Movement Control Area they will need to be pre-movement tested.

Selling through a saleyard

If you sell calves through an accredited saleyard they will create the sending movement in NAIT on your behalf. You must still make sure the calves are tagged and registered.

Selling to a meat processor

Bobby calves moved direct to slaughter are exempt from NAIT requirements to tag and register. Check with your meat processor about their requirements for accepting bobby calves.

Lifetime animal traceability starts with calving


Read transcript for this video
Hi. My name's Paul Mercer. I'm a dairy farm manager here at Givaghi Gold. I'm the PICA delegate on this farm. We milk 400 cows and we've just started welcoming a few calves on-farm in the last couple of weeks. We're expecting 400 calves this year. It is important for us and NAIT to have lifetime traceability. I register my calves in NAIT through using the MINDA live app on my cellphone. Once I've done that I get the confirmation email from NAIT to say that it's been recorded. After tagging. I go into my MINDA app and record it. [Close-up of process on is cellphone] Going into the calving, record calving, put in the date, we're looking up the number of the cow (number 86), she had a heifer. The calf will be reared as heifer reared number 16. It's dairy. It's at our NAIT location. The cow had no assistance. And we're finished.

One thing to remember with NAIT, is that by default all calves born on the dairy farm are recorded as dairy. When you're going to sell them or rear them on for beef, you need to change them to a beef production type in NAIT.
Lifetime traceability is important to me, because if there's an outbreak you can trace it back, you can find out where it started, you can prevent it, you can find out what the cause was so it doesn't happen again and affect our businesses. Recording all your animals in NAIT gives us the ability to trace all our animals back to the source and helps with our biosecurity for New Zealand.