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Poultry welfare monitoring: group-level technologies

Code: 9781786768704
Marian Stamp Dawkins and Elizabeth Rowe, University of Oxford, UK

Chapter synopsis: Commercial poultry are frequently kept in groups of thousands of individuals where tagging or identifying every bird is logistically impossible. Group, rather than individual, level approaches to assessing their health and welfare are therefore currently the most feasible. This chapter covers the most commonly used ways of automating welfare assessment for poultry with particular emphasis on broiler chickens and the use of visual images from cctv and video, sound and temperature sensing. A specific example of camera technology to detect flocks with high levels of hockburn and other health issues is described. Despite considerable potential for using technology to assess poultry welfare it is not currently widely used in practice. Reasons for this and the potential costs and benefits of applying Precision Livestock Farming to poultry are discussed in relation to the importance of making sure that technology is used to improve rather than diminish animal welfare.

DOI: 10.19103/AS.2020.0078.07
Table of contents 1 Introduction 2 Types of automated assessment 3 Automated measures of welfare as part of precision farming 4 Why isn’t automated welfare assessment more widely used? 5 Conclusions 6 Future trends 7 References

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