Light-based monitoring devices to assess range use by laying hens

Buijis, S and Nicol, C J and Booth, F and Richards, G and Tarlton, J F (2019) Light-based monitoring devices to assess range use by laying hens. Animal, 14 (4). pp. 814-823.

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Abstract

Access to an outdoor range has many potential benefits for laying hens but range use can be poor due to factors only partly understood. Techniques to monitor individual range use within commercial flocks are crucial to increase our understanding of these factors. Direct observation of individual range use is difficult and time-consuming, and automatic monitoring currently relies on equipment that is difficult to use in an on-farm setting without itself influencing range use. We evaluated the performance of a novel small, light and readily portable light-based monitoring system by validating its output against direct observations.

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