Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Life Sciences Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 1 - 18 of 18

Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

An Image Acquisition System For Studying Behaviors Of Sows And Piglets In Farrowing Barns, Suzanne Leonard, Hongwei Xin, Tami Brown-Brandl, Brett C. Ramirez Aug 2019

An Image Acquisition System For Studying Behaviors Of Sows And Piglets In Farrowing Barns, Suzanne Leonard, Hongwei Xin, Tami Brown-Brandl, Brett C. Ramirez

Brett Ramirez

Behavior studies in commercial swine farrowing room environments often need to monitor each set of sow and piglets individually and simultaneously. Autonomous computer imaging systems can overcome this challenge. The system presented here utilizes a time of flight depth sensor and a digital camera to capture depth and digital images of each sow and litter, housed in individual farrowing stalls. Depth sensors were centered above the stalls on a triangular truss spanning the length of the farrowing room and mounted in waterproof boxes with attached lids, enabling them to easily be waterproofed when cleaning the farrowing room. Each depth sensor ...


Effects Of Cage Stocking Density On Feeding Behaviors Of Group-Housed Laying Hens, Rachel Nichole Cook, Hongwei Xin, Dan Nettleton Jul 2019

Effects Of Cage Stocking Density On Feeding Behaviors Of Group-Housed Laying Hens, Rachel Nichole Cook, Hongwei Xin, Dan Nettleton

Dan Nettleton

Quantitative measurement of animal welfare continues to be a challenging task for both the animal agriculture industry and the scientific community. Characterization of animal feeding behavior provides a comparative elucidation of the animal’s behavioral deviation from its norms and thus carries implications for its welfare. This study examines the effects of cage stocking density (348, 387, 426, and 465 cm2; or 54, 60, 66, and 72 in.2 cage floor space per hen) on feeding behavior of W-36 White Leghorn laying hens kept in groups of six hens. The study employed a specialized instrumentation system and computational algorithm. The ...


Feeding Behaviors Of Laying Hens With Or Without Beak Trimming, Kelly E. Persyn, Hongwei Xin, Dan Nettleton, Atsuo Ikeguchi, Richard S. Gates Jul 2019

Feeding Behaviors Of Laying Hens With Or Without Beak Trimming, Kelly E. Persyn, Hongwei Xin, Dan Nettleton, Atsuo Ikeguchi, Richard S. Gates

Dan Nettleton

This study quantifies feeding behavior of W-36 White Leghorn laying hens (77 to 80 weeks old) as influenced by the management practice of beak trimming. The feeding behavior was characterized using a newly developed measurement system and computational algorithm. Non-trimmed (NT) and beak-trimmed (BT) hens showed similar daily feed intake and meal size. However, the BT hens tended to spend longer time feeding (3.3 vs. 2.0 h/d, P < 0.01), which coincided with their slower ingestion rate of 0.43 g/min-kg0.75 vs. 0.79 g/min-kg0.75 for the NT counterparts (P < 0.05). The BT hens had shorter time intervals between meals (101 s vs. 151 s, P < 0.01). Selective feeding, as demonstrated by larger feed particles apparent in the leftover feed, was noted for the BT hens. The leftover feed had a lower crude protein/adjusted crude protein content for the BT birds than that for the NT birds (16.7% vs. 18.7%, P < 0.05). In addition, the leftover feed of the BT birds had lower contents in phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, zinc, and manganese (P < 0.05), although no significant differences were detected in calcium, sodium, or metabolic energy content. Baseline feeding behavior data of this nature may help quantify and ensure the welfare of animals through exercising proper engineering design and/or management considerations.


Behavior, Welfare, Production And Bioenergetics Of Laying Hens In Alternative Housing Systems, Jofran Luiz De Oliveira Jan 2019

Behavior, Welfare, Production And Bioenergetics Of Laying Hens In Alternative Housing Systems, Jofran Luiz De Oliveira

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Transitioning of egg production systems from conventional cage to alternative housing (e.g., enriched colony, aviary cage-free) is increasingly occurring in various parts of the world, especially in Europe and the United States, to meet animal welfare requirements or legislations. This dissertation had the central goal of providing scientific knowledge or discoveries related to behavior, welfare, production, and bioenergetics of laying hens in alternative housing systems. It covers five experiments that were conducted in controlled environment and commercial settings with the following specific objectives: 1) Develop and validate a UHF RFID system able to evaluate nesting and feeding behaviors of ...


Effects Of Litter Floor Access And Inclusion Of Experienced Hens In Aviary Housing On Floor Eggs, Litter Condition, Air Quality, And Hen Welfare, Jofran L. Oliveira, Hongwei Xin, Lilong Chai, Suzanne T. Millman Dec 2018

Effects Of Litter Floor Access And Inclusion Of Experienced Hens In Aviary Housing On Floor Eggs, Litter Condition, Air Quality, And Hen Welfare, Jofran L. Oliveira, Hongwei Xin, Lilong Chai, Suzanne T. Millman

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Publications

To better understand how relevant intensive systems’ characteristics simultaneously affect the performance and welfare of broiler chickens, a meta-analysis of recent literature was carried out. The study determined the effects of gender, genetics, experimental initial age (EIA, d), stocking density (SD; kg/m2), group size (GS; n), bedding material (yes/no), duration of photoperiod (DP; h), divided scotoperiod (yes/no), feeding phases (1/2/3/>3), environmental control (EC; yes/no), environmental enrichment (yes/no), use of vaccines and other medications (yes/no), experimental duration (d), and relevant 2-way interactions on average daily gain (g/d), average daily feed intake ...


Mitigating Particulate Matter Emissions Of A Commercial Cage-Free Aviary Hen House, Lilong Chai, Hongwei Xin, Yu Wang, Jofran Oliveira, Kailao Wang, Yang Zhao Jan 2018

Mitigating Particulate Matter Emissions Of A Commercial Cage-Free Aviary Hen House, Lilong Chai, Hongwei Xin, Yu Wang, Jofran Oliveira, Kailao Wang, Yang Zhao

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Conference Proceedings and Presentations

Concerns over animal welfare among general public and marketing decisions have led to pledges by a number of U.S. food retailers and restaurants to source only cage-free (CF) eggs in the foreseeable future, e.g., by 2025. Compared to conventional cage production system, CF hen housing offers hens more space and opportunities to exercise their natural behaviors (e.g., perching, dust bathing, and foraging). However, CF housing poses many inherent environmental challenges, among which are high levels of particulate matter (PM) and ammonia (NH3). Spraying liquid agent (e.g., 125 mL m-2 per cm litter depth) has been shown ...


An Image Acquisition System For Studying Behaviors Of Sows And Piglets In Farrowing Barns, Suzanne Leonard, Hongwei Xin, Tami Brown-Brandl, Brett C. Ramirez Jan 2018

An Image Acquisition System For Studying Behaviors Of Sows And Piglets In Farrowing Barns, Suzanne Leonard, Hongwei Xin, Tami Brown-Brandl, Brett C. Ramirez

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Conference Proceedings and Presentations

Behavior studies in commercial swine farrowing room environments often need to monitor each set of sow and piglets individually and simultaneously. Autonomous computer imaging systems can overcome this challenge. The system presented here utilizes a time of flight depth sensor and a digital camera to capture depth and digital images of each sow and litter, housed in individual farrowing stalls. Depth sensors were centered above the stalls on a triangular truss spanning the length of the farrowing room and mounted in waterproof boxes with attached lids, enabling them to easily be waterproofed when cleaning the farrowing room. Each depth sensor ...


Particulate Matter Suppression And Heat Stress Relief In A Cage-Free Hen House, Lilong Chai, Hongwei Xin, Yu Wang, Jofran Oliveira, Kailao Wang, Yang Zhao Jan 2018

Particulate Matter Suppression And Heat Stress Relief In A Cage-Free Hen House, Lilong Chai, Hongwei Xin, Yu Wang, Jofran Oliveira, Kailao Wang, Yang Zhao

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Conference Proceedings and Presentations

Compared to conventional cage production system, cage-free (CF) hen housing offers hens more space and opportunities to exercise their natural behaviors (e.g., perching, dust bathing, and foraging). However, CF housing poses many inherent environmental challenges, among which are high levels of particulate matter (PM). Spraying liquid agent (e.g., 125 mL m-2 per cm litter depth) has been shown to effectively mitigate the generation of PM by 60%-70% from CF henhouse litter in our previous lab-scale tests. The objectives of this study were to verify the lab-study findings of PM reduction with liquid spray on a commercial CF ...


Responses Of Laying Hens To Full Vs. Partial Litter Access In Aviary Housing, Jofran Oliveira, Hongwei Xin Jan 2018

Responses Of Laying Hens To Full Vs. Partial Litter Access In Aviary Housing, Jofran Oliveira, Hongwei Xin

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Conference Proceedings and Presentations

Cage-free egg production has been a topic of increasing attention in the USA over the past two years. With different cage-free styles and management schemes, retailers have developed their own cage-free criteria. One highly debated aspect is if hens may be kept inside the system for part of the day, during the first few hours after lights-on. Research is lacking regarding the impact of such practice on hen well-being, production performance, and environmental conditions. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of providing full litter access (i.e. doors always open) vs. partial litter access (i.e ...


Hvac Techniques For Modern Livestock And Poultry Production Systems, Steven J. Hoff Jan 2018

Hvac Techniques For Modern Livestock And Poultry Production Systems, Steven J. Hoff

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Publications

Thermal modification for housed livestock and poultry production (HLPP) systems has evolved from outside raised or uncontrolled naturally ventilated building systems into sophisticated computer-controlled cloud-analyzed complexes in the quest for producing a safe, reliable, sustainable, and efficient protein supply for our ever-growing population. This chapter discusses a few of the various HLPP systems used in the USA and details the design process in quantifying the needs for our housed livestock and poultry. Specific emphasis is placed on general building characteristics, general ventilation design features, heat stress control, and systems designed to address animal welfare.


Behavior And Production Responses Of Pullets And Laying Hens To Enriched Housing And Lighting, Kai Liu Jan 2017

Behavior And Production Responses Of Pullets And Laying Hens To Enriched Housing And Lighting, Kai Liu

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The global demand for egg-source protein has been increasing rapidly along with the mounting public concerns over laying hen welfare. As a result, alternative hen housing has been emerging and adopted in different parts of the world, especially in developed countries. This dissertation had the overarching goal of generating the much-needed knowledge related to alternative laying hen housing design and management for improved laying hen welfare, efficiency of resource utilization, and production performance. Supporting this overarching goal were two primary research objectives that aimed to quantify behavioral and production performance responses of pullets and laying hens to perch design/configuration ...


Automatic Recognition Of Lactating Sow Behaviors Through Depth Image Processing, F. Lao, T. Brown-Brandl, J. P. Stinn, K. Liu, G. Teng, H. Xin Jul 2016

Automatic Recognition Of Lactating Sow Behaviors Through Depth Image Processing, F. Lao, T. Brown-Brandl, J. P. Stinn, K. Liu, G. Teng, H. Xin

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Publications

Manual observation and classification of animal behaviors is laborious, time-consuming, and of limited ability to process large amount of data. A computer vision-based system was developed that automatically recognizes sow behaviors (lying, sitting, standing, kneeling, feeding, drinking, and shifting) in farrowing crate. The system consisted of a low-cost 3D camera that simultaneously acquires digital and depth images and a software program that detects and identifies the sow’s behaviors. This paper describes the computational algorithm for the analysis of depth images and presents its performance in recognizing the sow’s behaviors as compared to manual recognition. The images were acquired ...


Mortality Rate Of Weaned And Feeder Pigs As Affected By Ground Transport Conditions, Yang Zhao, Hongwei Xin, Jay D. Harmon Jan 2016

Mortality Rate Of Weaned And Feeder Pigs As Affected By Ground Transport Conditions, Yang Zhao, Hongwei Xin, Jay D. Harmon

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Publications

Ground transport of pigs at early ages may result in profit-stripping incidences of mortality and compromised animal welfare due to stress stemming from unfavorable transport conditions. The objective of this study was to examine possible causative relationships of mortality rate of weaned and feeder pigs to ground transport conditions. A total of 7056 transportation records of weaned pigs (3174 records) and feeder pigs (3882 records) for the period from April 2012 to January 2014 were provided by a U.S. swine company. Effects of pig type (weaned vs. feeder pigs), ambient temperature (<15°C or cool/cold, 15°C to 25°C or mild, and >25°C or warm/hot), travel distance (<600 km, 600 to 900 km, 900 to 1200 km, 1200 to 1500 km, and >1500 ...


Determination Of Minimum Horizontal Distance Between Laying-Hen Perches, Kai Liu, Hongwei Xin, Timothy A. Shepherd, Yang Zhao Jul 2014

Determination Of Minimum Horizontal Distance Between Laying-Hen Perches, Kai Liu, Hongwei Xin, Timothy A. Shepherd, Yang Zhao

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Conference Proceedings and Presentations

The objective of the study was to determine minimum horizontal distance (HD) between perches for laying hens using qualitative and quantitative behavioral analysis. A real-time monitoring system was developed to record hen’s perching behaviors, such as the number of perching hens, perching duration, perching trips, and the pattern of perch occupancy. Three groups of sixteen W-36 laying hens (68 weeks old at test onset) with prior perching experience were used. For each group, hens were kept in an enriched wire-mesh floor pen (1.2×1.2×1.2m) equipped with two parallel perches (15 cm perch space/hen). The ...


Effects Of Cage Stocking Density On Feeding Behaviors Of Group-Housed Laying Hens, Rachel Nichole Cook, Hongwei Xin, Dan Nettleton Jan 2006

Effects Of Cage Stocking Density On Feeding Behaviors Of Group-Housed Laying Hens, Rachel Nichole Cook, Hongwei Xin, Dan Nettleton

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Publications

Quantitative measurement of animal welfare continues to be a challenging task for both the animal agriculture industry and the scientific community. Characterization of animal feeding behavior provides a comparative elucidation of the animal’s behavioral deviation from its norms and thus carries implications for its welfare. This study examines the effects of cage stocking density (348, 387, 426, and 465 cm2; or 54, 60, 66, and 72 in.2 cage floor space per hen) on feeding behavior of W-36 White Leghorn laying hens kept in groups of six hens. The study employed a specialized instrumentation system and computational algorithm. The ...


Development Of A Low-Cost Gps Herd Activity And Welfare Kit (Hawk) For Livestock Monitoring, J. D. Davis, M. J. Darr, H. Xin, J. D. Harmon, T. M. Brown-Brandl May 2005

Development Of A Low-Cost Gps Herd Activity And Welfare Kit (Hawk) For Livestock Monitoring, J. D. Davis, M. J. Darr, H. Xin, J. D. Harmon, T. M. Brown-Brandl

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Conference Proceedings and Presentations

The objective of this study was to develop a low-cost, automatic and continuous Herd Activity and Welfare Kit (HAWK). The operational goal for the GPS HAWK was to collect GPS positions and analog sensor data at a user-specified sampling frequency and store it in a secure format. The GPS HAWK uses a Garmin 12-channel, WAAS corrected, low-power GPS receiver with(0-5V single-ended, 10-bit resolution) analog to digital (A/D) conversion channels as well as 16 general purpose I/O pins that can be configured for digital operations or serial communication. Data is stored to an EEPROM device and offloaded daily ...


Feeding Behaviors Of Laying Hens With Or Without Beak Trimming, Kelly E. Persyn, Hongwei Xin, Dan Nettleton, Atsuo Ikeguchi, Richard S. Gates Jan 2004

Feeding Behaviors Of Laying Hens With Or Without Beak Trimming, Kelly E. Persyn, Hongwei Xin, Dan Nettleton, Atsuo Ikeguchi, Richard S. Gates

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Publications

This study quantifies feeding behavior of W-36 White Leghorn laying hens (77 to 80 weeks old) as influenced by the management practice of beak trimming. The feeding behavior was characterized using a newly developed measurement system and computational algorithm. Non-trimmed (NT) and beak-trimmed (BT) hens showed similar daily feed intake and meal size. However, the BT hens tended to spend longer time feeding (3.3 vs. 2.0 h/d, P < 0.01), which coincided with their slower ingestion rate of 0.43 g/min-kg0.75 vs. 0.79 g/min-kg0.75 for the NT counterparts (P < 0.05). The BT hens had shorter time intervals between meals (101 s vs. 151 s, P < 0.01). Selective feeding, as demonstrated by larger feed particles apparent in the leftover feed, was noted for the BT hens. The leftover feed had a lower crude protein/adjusted crude protein content for the BT birds than that for the NT birds (16.7% vs. 18.7%, P < 0.05). In addition, the leftover feed of the BT birds had lower contents in phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, zinc, and manganese (P < 0.05), although no significant differences were detected in calcium, sodium, or metabolic energy content. Baseline feeding behavior data of this nature may help quantify and ensure the welfare of animals through exercising proper engineering design and/or management considerations.


A Research Facility For Studying Poultry Responses To Heat Stress And Its Relief, Tadayuki Yanagi Jr., Hongwei Xin, Richard S. Gates Jan 2002

A Research Facility For Studying Poultry Responses To Heat Stress And Its Relief, Tadayuki Yanagi Jr., Hongwei Xin, Richard S. Gates

Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Publications

A control and measurement system was developed for studying physiological responses of poultry to thermal challenges and means of heat stress relief. The system features automatic control of air temperature and relative humidity (RH); manual setting of air velocity [ ± 0.1 m·s -1 ( ± 20 ft·min -1 )]; and continuous recording of surface and core body temperatures of the animal. The target thermal conditions in the animal occupied zone were achieved inside a wind tunnel [0 to 1.5 m·s -1 (0 to 300 ft·min -1 )] that was situated inside an environment-controlled room and re-circulated the room air ...