Use of a UAV-mounted video camera to assess feeding behavior of Raramuri Criollo cows

TitleUse of a UAV-mounted video camera to assess feeding behavior of Raramuri Criollo cows
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsNyamuryekung'e S., Cibils AF, Estell R.E., Gonzalez AL
Conference NameInternational Rangeland Congress
Pagination1070-1072
Date Published07/2016
PublisherInternational Rangeland Congress
Conference LocationSaskatchewan, Canada
ARIS Log Number331740
Abstract

Interest in use of unmanned aerial vehicles in science has increased in recent years. It is predicted that they will be a preferred remote sensing platform for applications that inform sustainable rangeland management in the future. The objective of this study was to determine whether UAV video monitoring could be used to predict intake of food by beef cows. A series of tests were conducted in an arena with three food types and video footage was obtained with a quadcopter fitted with a digital camera. Tests were first conducted to determine if sound from the UAV altered feeding behavior. A second experiment was conducted to determine if UAV video monitoring could be used to predict intake of known amounts of food. Number and length of visits to feeders were monitored for each cow in both experiments and correlated with amount of food eaten. No effect of sound on intake was detected. Strong positive correlations were observed between feeding frequency observations from UAV video footage analysis and actual amount of food consumed from each feeder. However, battery length limited observations to approximately five minutes per flight. Further development of UAV power sources is needed to provide greater flight autonomy for use of this tool in rangeland environments.

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