Detection of jumping and landing force in laying hens using wireless wearable sensors
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Increased mobility of hens in noncaged housing presents possibilities for bone breakage due to crash landings from jumps or flights between perches or housing infrastructure. Because bone breakage is a welfare and economic concern, understanding how movement from different heights affects hen landing impact is important. By tracking 3-dimensional bird movement, an automated sensor technology could facilitate understanding regarding the interaction between noncage laying hens and their housing. A method for detecting jumps and flight trajectories could help explain how jumps from different heights affect hen landing impact. In this study, a wearable sensor-based jump detection mechanism for egg-laying hens was designed and implemented. Hens were fitted with a lightweight (10 g) wireless body-mounted sensor to remotely sample accelerometer data. Postprocessed data could detect occurrence of jumps from a perch to the ground, time of jump initiation, time of landing, and force of landing. Additionally, the developed technology could estimate the approximate height of the jump. Hens jumping from heights of 41 and 61 cm were found to land with an average force of 81.0 ± 2.7 N and 106.9 ± 2.6 N, respectively, assuming zero initial velocity (P < 0.001). This paper establishes the technological feasibility of using body-mounted sensor technology for jump detection by hens in different noncage housing configurations.
author list (cited authors)
Banerjee, D., Daigle, C. L., Dong, B., Wurtz, K., Newberry, R. C., Siegford, J. M., & Biswas, S.