The behaviour of commercial broilers in response to a mobile robot

Dennis, I. C. and Abeyesinghe, S. M. and Demmers, T. G. M. (2020) The behaviour of commercial broilers in response to a mobile robot. British Poultry Science. ISSN 0007-1668

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1080/00071668.2020.1759785

Abstract

1. Modern broiler production, in increasingly large sheds holding upwards of 50.000 birds, controls indoor climate based on a handful of fixed location sensors, often well above the bird occupied zone. Significant deviations within a shed from the optimal climate conditions for the birds are common, but installing a higher density grid of fixed sensors is not cost effective. A robotic platform, moving through the flock of birds, collecting detailed spacial information on a wide range of climate parameters at bird level, will enable accurate decisions to optimise the climate in large sheds being made in real time. 2. A preliminary study investigated the feasibility of running a mobile robotic platform among a flock of broiler chickens for an entire 6-week cycle. Bird behaviour in response to the robot was also studied.