Poultry as happy with robots as with humans
Labor could have ever-smaller role in broiler production
Studies conducted by the USA’s Georgia Tech Research Institute have found that there is no negative impact on the performance of broilers when robotic systems are used in growout houses rather than humans.
The institute’s Agricultural Technology Research Program evaluated the feasibility of using commercially available robotic systems to perform growout house management tasks. The systems were fitted with 2D and 3D sensors/cameras, and operated in an experimental facility at the University of Georgia’s Poultry Research Farm in Athens. Video and audio data were collected from 500 birds over a six week growout cycle.
The researchers developed and calculated metrics for the robotic systems and for humans, so allowing quantitative analysis of the birds’ reactions to both. The results of the study suggest that there is no negative impact on the performance of the birds due to the operation of robotic systems when compared to their reaction to humans.