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Smart Animal Agriculture: Application of Real-Time Sensors to Improve Animal Well-Being and Production

Authors
  • Halachmi, Ilan
  • Guarino, Marcella
  • Bewley, Jeffrey
  • Pastell, Matti
Type
Published Article
Journal
Annual Review of Animal Biosciences
Publisher
Annual Reviews
Publication Date
Feb 15, 2019
Volume
7
Pages
403–425
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1146/annurev-animal-020518-114851
Source
Annual Reviews
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

Consumption of animal products such as meat, milk, and eggs in first-world countries has leveled off, but it is rising precipitously in developing countries. Agriculture will have to increase its output to meet demand, opening the door to increased automation and technological innovation; intensified, sustainable farming; and precision livestock farming (PLF) applications. Early indicators of medical problems, which use sensors to alert cattle farmers early concerning individual animals that need special care, are proliferating. Wearable technologies dominate the market. In less-value-per-animal systems like sheep, goat, pig, poultry, and fish, one sensor, like a camera or robot per herd/flock/school, rather than one sensor per animal, will become common. PLF sensors generate huge amounts of data, and many actors benefit from PLF data. No standards currently exist for sharing sensor-generated data, limiting the use of commercial sensors. Technologies providing accurate data can enhance a well-managed farm. Development of methods to turn the data into actionable solutions is critical.

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