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'Chickens [NOT OT!]'
2000\02\10@202740 by Ryan Pogge

flavicon
face
ok a thousand dollars to anyone who provides a solution which I use,
poultry industry, very cost driven, every cent counts as the proffit margin
on a bird is in the fractions of a cent per pound.

problem:
finding the average weight of about 10,000 birds in a chicken house a day
before market, old solution wiegh out a hundred or so by hand... average the
numbers.
this is to make sure they are at optimum wieght to goto market to provide
maximum proffit.

how do you do it electronicly with little human effort?
at first we tried an electronic scale placed on the floor, hoping that
enough chickens would step on it... problem is chickens are
territorial...... pretty much only one or two chickens step on it...

and it has to be relitivly simple...i.e. no large robotic vacume cleaner
robots that rove around and suck up chickens, weigh them, and spit them out
:-)

any ideas?
oh and my fathers company is http://www.Mountaire.com  for anyone interested.

Ryan

2000\02\10@210119 by Glenn West

flavicon
face
How about vision based.
Is the visual size related to the weight?
Ie, a computer with a image sensor
could "recognize" the checken, and "guess"
the weight. With a little study, a neural network
can be driven from a "CMOS" sensor, and the guesses
would be pretty darn accurate.

I know this sounds high-tech, but image sensors
are cheap, and I can do the processing in hardware
using a fpga, and a single SDRAM part.

Its very simlar to technology we are doing
for facial recognition (In humans).

You put a little "box" in each check house, and
its always looking at a "area".  Maybe add a motor so
we cover a larger area.

Tell me the environment of your checken coop, and
I may be able to simpyfy.

Right now, sounds like a "million-gate" part. (Altera or Xilinx)
a photbit sensor, and a "ehternet" interface or modem.

Data would be tablated on a web page.

Cost of the unit is driven by volume(How many you need),
and cost of the FPGA. (Also drive by volume).

Also the NRE.

If you give me more info on chickens I'll see if I can figure out a
simple way.


At 08:24 PM 2/10/00 -0800, you wrote:
{Quote hidden}

-----------------------------------------------------
Glenn West - Deputy Director, Infocomm Lab
Kent Ridge Digital Labs (KRDL)
Voice: (65) 874-8210 Fax: (65) 776-8109
21 Heng Mui Keng Terrace
Singapore 119613 Singapore
-----------------------------------------------------

2000\02\10@210945 by Brent Brown

picon face
OK, I'll gladly pass on my idea for a thousand dollars.

Just weigh the whole chicken house with x number of birds in it,
subtract the weight of chicken house and divide by x.

I guess the chicken house probably consists of cages of x birds in
each cage (eg 500, 1000 or 5000?). Put load cells under the
supports of the cage, add all the weights to get the total.
Alternatively, if it suits better, suspend the cage from cables and
use load cells to measure the strain in the cables. (Bird on a wire
technique). Ask all the birds to step outside for a minute while you
weigh the cage by itself. Ensure that all feeding mechanisms,
water troughs etc are separately mounted and not measured by the
system.

The "little human effort" bit comes in when you quickly check that
no birds are airborne before pressing a button that takes a weight
reading. Then the same little human does the afore mentioned
subtract and divide routines on a small calculator to get the final
answer of average weight per bird.

But wait there's more! For my $2000 idea you do all of the above,
with lots PICs everywhere of course, plus network all the load cells
back to a PC. The PC has some real fancy software on it that logs
all the weight data at regular time intervals, correlates it with
feeding times and food volume, water supply, chicken house
temperature, humidity, CO2 content, ambient noise, light intensity,
wind direction and velocity. All this makes big reports that look
great to the management and shareholders and tell you what
makes the birds heavy the quickest.

I better stop rolling out the good ideas in case you are getting low
on money.

Brent

>ok a thousand dollars to anyone who provides a solution which I
use,
{Quote hidden}

2000\02\10@211546 by Ryan Pogge

flavicon
face
ahh but the chickens are not in cages!
they run free on a large floor.... :-)
and we are talking a LARGE number of chickens...
and BIG houses....  some near a football field in length.

thanks though
Ryan


{Quote hidden}

margin
> > on a bird is in the fractions of a cent per pound.
> >
> > problem:
> >  finding the average weight of about 10,000 birds in a chicken house a
day
> > before market, old solution wiegh out a hundred or so by hand... average
the
> > numbers.
> > this is to make sure they are at optimum wieght to goto market to
provide
> > maximum proffit.
> >
> > how do you do it electronicly with little human effort?
> > at first we tried an electronic scale placed on the floor, hoping that
> > enough chickens would step on it... problem is chickens are
> > territorial...... pretty much only one or two chickens step on it...
> >
> > and it has to be relitivly simple...i.e. no large robotic vacume cleaner
> > robots that rove around and suck up chickens, weigh them, and spit them
out
> > :-)
> >
> > any ideas?
> > oh and my fathers company is http://www.Mountaire.com  for anyone interested.
> >
> > Ryan
> >

2000\02\10@211755 by Ryan Pogge
flavicon
face
hmmm vision based...
how acurate is "pretty darn acurate"?
granted it is an excelent idea ... but we are talking fractions of a pound..
fractions of an ounce realy...
I will have more "stats" soon, like number of birds, size of houses,
acuracy needed(how many fractions of an ounce?), etc....
I will pass the idea on to my father and see what he thinks.
Thanks,
Ryan
I will be posting more details once I have a talk with him.
Thanks



{Quote hidden}

margin
> >on a bird is in the fractions of a cent per pound.
> >
> >problem:
> > finding the average weight of about 10,000 birds in a chicken house a
day
> >before market, old solution wiegh out a hundred or so by hand... average
the
{Quote hidden}

out
{Quote hidden}

2000\02\10@211801 by Dave VanHorn

flavicon
face
But how do you compensate for the weight of the chickenfeed (variable) and
the byproducts (Variable, and smelly)

Use a catapult, so that every time a bird steps to the center during the
sampling interval, he's catapulted into a wall. (taking care of the
territoriality problem)
Use a video camera to mark the impact point, and calculate the weight from
the trajectory. The expended chicken then slides into a bag labelled "Mc
Nuggets".

2000\02\10@212342 by Charles Ader

picon face
A suggestion on how to weigh "chickens on the fly".

Design a simple feeding station that will allow
only one bird to feed at each port at a time.
Place a simple scale at each port and log the
time of day to the millisecond and weight each
time a chicken feeds.

For a sample of 100 chickens it would require
twenty feeding stations with five ports each.

The stations would be placed in the barn separated
by a large enough distance so that one bird could not
feed at more than one port in a few seconds.

Leave the stations in place to 20 to 30 minutes then
collect the data. 100 samples with time stamps in the
same 500 millisecond will be found and the average
will reflect the population.

Charles.

2000\02\10@212758 by David Covick

flavicon
face
> But how do you compensate for the weight of the chickenfeed (variable) and
> the byproducts (Variable, and smelly)
>
> Use a catapult, so that every time a bird steps to the center during the
> sampling interval, he's catapulted into a wall. (taking care of the
> territoriality problem)
> Use a video camera to mark the impact point, and calculate the weight from
> the trajectory. The expended chicken then slides into a bag labelled "Mc
> Nuggets".
>

I think that this one deserves to win :)

2000\02\10@213640 by Ryan Pogge

flavicon
face
heheh great....
actualy I dont know about the feed and wast variable...I will talk to my
dad,
maybee that they dont feed them that day that they are weighed...and if they
are underwieght they feed for another week, .... I am not sure...but good
point.

Love the catapult Idea tho!

> But how do you compensate for the weight of the chickenfeed (variable) and
> the byproducts (Variable, and smelly)
>
> Use a catapult, so that every time a bird steps to the center during the
> sampling interval, he's catapulted into a wall. (taking care of the
> territoriality problem)
> Use a video camera to mark the impact point, and calculate the weight from
> the trajectory. The expended chicken then slides into a bag labelled "Mc
> Nuggets".

2000\02\10@213848 by l.allen

picon face
I would imagine a moving barrier, the width of the shed.
Along its length are a series of gates, with funnelling type
walls/fences that 'encourage ' the chickens through the access
ways as the barrier moves slowly along the length of the shed.
As each chicken passes through the barrier big enough for only
one bird a optical sensor establishes that 1 bird is present and a
rapid, multiple sample weighing is performed on the floor plate of
this access way.
The sample weights (say several hundred) for each bird are
averaged to minimize errors and the weight recorded, to be
averaged as the total bird count is completed.
Oh yes... the birds are counted too of course.

This should work.
The birds should get used to the routine of this wall moving slowly
from one end of the shed to another once a day.
_____________________________

Lance Allen
Technical Officer
Uni of Auckland
Psych Dept
New Zealand

http://www.psych.auckland.ac.nz

_____________________________

2000\02\10@213852 by Wagner Lipnharski

flavicon
face
Man, this solution would cost you more than a single thousand dollars,
because it will get back to you pretty fast in savings... hehe,
unfortunately (for the money) this is pretty simple physics solution
used also for cattle, vegetables and other products.  The solution takes
only few seconds to measure the average relative weight in a batch and
does not involve changing the floor or beta radiation, or some other
crazy thing like that...

Seriously interested? "Cash in hand", email me directly... I am sorry, I
like (and need) money too... :)

Wagner.

2000\02\10@213900 by Ryan Pogge

flavicon
face
hehe maybee a constalation prize for funniest idea?


> > But how do you compensate for the weight of the chickenfeed (variable)
and
> > the byproducts (Variable, and smelly)
> >
> > Use a catapult, so that every time a bird steps to the center during the
> > sampling interval, he's catapulted into a wall. (taking care of the
> > territoriality problem)
> > Use a video camera to mark the impact point, and calculate the weight
from
> > the trajectory. The expended chicken then slides into a bag labelled "Mc
> > Nuggets".
> >
>
> I think that this one deserves to win :)

2000\02\10@214301 by Dave VanHorn

flavicon
face
> > Use a catapult, so that every time a bird steps to the center during the
> > sampling interval, he's catapulted into a wall. (taking care of the
> > territoriality problem)
> > Use a video camera to mark the impact point, and calculate the weight
from
> > the trajectory. The expended chicken then slides into a bag labelled "Mc
> > Nuggets".
> >
>
> I think that this one deserves to win :)

:)

I forgot to add, you can cross check the trajectory calculation by means of
an impact sensor (accelerometer) on the target plate, since the catapult
would impart a constant force (some number of newtons)

2000\02\10@214310 by Jeff King

flavicon
face
Ryan:

This may not even be a "electronic" problem in the sense you are looking
for a average weight, and any individual variances among a specific bird
would mean little.

Your really need to break this down into equation, and attempt to
minimize the number of "unmeasurable" variables

You have inputs into the system, and outputs from the systems.

Inputs:

Water
Food (feed)
The growing chicken
Time
Temperature

Outputs:
Chicken waste (Feces&Urine)
Chicken mass (meat)

Factors needed:
Typically Chicken efficiency per breed in converting food to mass


You easily can measure water input, Food consumed, temperature and time. Each
breed of chicken will will have a typical conversion rate of feed/water into waste
and well as mass.

So I think this is less of a electronics problem, then simply looking at a populations
intake and developing formulas to calculate average weight.

That much being said, I'm suprised such a formula doesn't already exist in this
field. Might want to look around.

Good luck

Jeff King
Aero Data




Ryan Pogge wrote:

> problem:
>  finding the average weight of about 10,000 birds in a chicken house a day
> before market, old solution wiegh out a hundred or so by hand... average the
> numbers.
> this is to make sure they are at optimum wieght to goto market to provide
> maximum proffit.
>

2000\02\10@214855 by Des Bromilow

flavicon
face
A couple of ideas/suggestions.

#1) have the entire floor as a drop through grate (manure drops through) and suspended feeders. Then (in simplistic theory) the floor will have a weight equal to the weight of the floor (plus small amounts of accumulated mess) plus the weight of your known number of chickens. (use a sensitive weighbridge type sensing structure to weigh the floor)
#1A) Variation would be to have a "tunnel" which was a smaller version of the weighed floor idea. Visualise a cattle race/crush idea. You would have tunnel you drive the birds into and shut the gate. The tunnel is blocked off at both ends, and the mass weighed. The floor of the tunnel would only be used for the weighing excercise so feeders and accumulated manure/feathers wouldn't be an issue since the tunnel would be unused most of the time and easily cleaned. Possible problem with this technique... do the birds "object" to being driven, ie will the experience of being driven and held in the tunnel cause fights/crush damage, and therefore injure the birds? (Perhaps an "incentive" of a known mass of food in the tunnel could be used to reduce this risk?)


#2) thermal mass
It should be possible to heat the henhouse to a certain amount (or for a certain amount of time) and measure the changes (time and magnitude) of temperature change. This, I dare say, would need to be based on a lot of quantative data since I sure the thermal coefficient of a chicken is not something you would easily find in a text book.

#3) thermal output.
Is it possible to grab a thermal image of the henhouse, and determine the thermal utput (radiated body heat) of a chook? I expect that the thermal output of a chicken (hatchling) would be considerably less than a full grown hen... could this be used?
This would be the least "intrusive" of the suggestions I've suggested so far.

#4)Perhaps a combination technique of measuring mass of food/water inputted into the system, minus the mass of outputted manure, minus the thermal equivalent of radiated heat, minus the energy used in movement, and the result should be the final body mass of the system (presumming all unaccounted for inputs result in body mass.

#5) Pavlov technique.
Using reward systems, train the birds to stand on the scales to obtain food. then (in theory) each bird will stand on the scales. Perhaps a timered system could be used to "encourage " the bird to get off the scales and allow another bird to hop on. (Timered being something along the lines of a chute of gate which shut off the food after the bird had been one the scales for a certain length of time.)

#6) Slave labour
Buy a set of underprivilidged ill educated folks and hire them at 2 cents per day to capture and weigh every bird in the henhouse.

#7) Divine revelation
Ask god, or someone who knows as much about chickens as him, and say "Hey, what do you think the average mass of all the chooks in this henhouse is?" and you'll get an answer. Caveat: Don't whinge at me if you don't hear or understand god's answr. Similarly don't whinge at me if your "God substitute" gives the incorrect answer.

Hope this helps, even if just to brighten your day.
Des

>>> Ryan Pogge <spam_OUTrpoggeTakeThisOuTspamMICHAELANGELO.NET> 2/11/00 2:24:06 pm >>>
ok a thousand dollars to anyone who provides a solution which I use,
poultry industry, very cost driven, every cent counts as the proffit margin
on a bird is in the fractions of a cent per pound.

problem:
finding the average weight of about 10,000 birds in a chicken house a day
before market, old solution wiegh out a hundred or so by hand... average the
numbers.
this is to make sure they are at optimum wieght to goto market to provide
maximum proffit.

how do you do it electronicly with little human effort?
at first we tried an electronic scale placed on the floor, hoping that
enough chickens would step on it... problem is chickens are
territorial...... pretty much only one or two chickens step on it...

and it has to be relitivly simple...i.e. no large robotic vacume cleaner
robots that rove around and suck up chickens, weigh them, and spit them out
:-)

any ideas?
oh and my fathers company is http://www.Mountaire.com  for anyone interested.

Ryan

2000\02\10@215106 by Brent Brown

picon face
OK. So you like the vision based idea but not my weighing idea.
I think it is unlikely that just looking at the birds has much potential
for accuracy, unless maybe you train them stand on a line, look
straight at the camera and hold their wings up...

How about a mixed system: vision based to count the number of
chickens on a platform (say 10m x 10m) which is weighed. That
way I still get $500 right?

>
> ahh but the chickens are not in cages!
> they run free on a large floor.... :-)
> and we are talking a LARGE number of chickens...
> and BIG houses....  some near a football field in length.
>
> thanks though
> Ryan

2000\02\10@215725 by Glenn West

flavicon
face
Actually size is not a problem. With a "swivel" head,
or a "array" of cheap sensors I can cover a large area.
Counting would be realativly simple. But the cost of
putting a rugged large area weing is the problem.

Current imaging technology is looking at recognizing people
in a crowd, so what we are talking is a: Recognizing a "chicken",
then recognizing the gneral size of a chicken.

The issue is, what cost of implmenentaiton.

Think a little harder

Seek is sprinkled on the floor for the birds to eat, and they eat
randomly, but stay in there zones. Hmmm.

At 03:53 PM 2/11/00 +1300, you wrote:
{Quote hidden}

-----------------------------------------------------
Glenn West - Deputy Director, Infocomm Lab
Kent Ridge Digital Labs (KRDL)
Voice: (65) 874-8210 Fax: (65) 776-8109
21 Heng Mui Keng Terrace
Singapore 119613 Singapore
-----------------------------------------------------

2000\02\10@215729 by Ryan Pogge

flavicon
face
graeat and funny stuff :-)
I like the "reward scale" idea actualy.
replacing the floor and feeding/watering systems in thousands of houses is
not going to work though... this has got to be low cost and easy to install.
I will get more details tommorow ... I was only probing for intrest
tonight...
I will post the full proposal tommorow night.
Thanks a bunch to everyone who has answered so far.
Ryan


> A couple of ideas/suggestions.
>
> #1) have the entire floor as a drop through grate (manure drops through)
and suspended feeders. Then (in simplistic theory) the floor will have a
weight equal to the weight of the floor (plus small amounts of accumulated
mess) plus the weight of your known number of chickens. (use a sensitive
weighbridge type sensing structure to weigh the floor)
> #1A) Variation would be to have a "tunnel" which was a smaller version of
the weighed floor idea. Visualise a cattle race/crush idea. You would have
tunnel you drive the birds into and shut the gate. The tunnel is blocked off
at both ends, and the mass weighed. The floor of the tunnel would only be
used for the weighing excercise so feeders and accumulated manure/feathers
wouldn't be an issue since the tunnel would be unused most of the time and
easily cleaned. Possible problem with this technique... do the birds
"object" to being driven, ie will the experience of being driven and held in
the tunnel cause fights/crush damage, and therefore injure the birds?
(Perhaps an "incentive" of a known mass of food in the tunnel could be used
to reduce this risk?)
>
>
> #2) thermal mass
> It should be possible to heat the henhouse to a certain amount (or for a
certain amount of time) and measure the changes (time and magnitude) of
temperature change. This, I dare say, would need to be based on a lot of
quantative data since I sure the thermal coefficient of a chicken is not
something you would easily find in a text book.
>
> #3) thermal output.
> Is it possible to grab a thermal image of the henhouse, and determine the
thermal utput (radiated body heat) of a chook? I expect that the thermal
output of a chicken (hatchling) would be considerably less than a full grown
hen... could this be used?
> This would be the least "intrusive" of the suggestions I've suggested so
far.
>
> #4)Perhaps a combination technique of measuring mass of food/water
inputted into the system, minus the mass of outputted manure, minus the
thermal equivalent of radiated heat, minus the energy used in movement, and
the result should be the final body mass of the system (presumming all
unaccounted for inputs result in body mass.
>
> #5) Pavlov technique.
> Using reward systems, train the birds to stand on the scales to obtain
food. then (in theory) each bird will stand on the scales. Perhaps a timered
system could be used to "encourage " the bird to get off the scales and
allow another bird to hop on. (Timered being something along the lines of a
chute of gate which shut off the food after the bird had been one the scales
for a certain length of time.)
>
> #6) Slave labour
> Buy a set of underprivilidged ill educated folks and hire them at 2 cents
per day to capture and weigh every bird in the henhouse.
>
> #7) Divine revelation
> Ask god, or someone who knows as much about chickens as him, and say "Hey,
what do you think the average mass of all the chooks in this henhouse is?"
and you'll get an answer. Caveat: Don't whinge at me if you don't hear or
understand god's answr. Similarly don't whinge at me if your "God
substitute" gives the incorrect answer.
>
> Hope this helps, even if just to brighten your day.
> Des
>
> >>> Ryan Pogge <.....rpoggeKILLspamspam@spam@MICHAELANGELO.NET> 2/11/00 2:24:06 pm >>>
> ok a thousand dollars to anyone who provides a solution which I use,
> poultry industry, very cost driven, every cent counts as the proffit
margin
> on a bird is in the fractions of a cent per pound.
>
> problem:
>  finding the average weight of about 10,000 birds in a chicken house a day
> before market, old solution wiegh out a hundred or so by hand... average
the
{Quote hidden}

out
> :-)
>
> any ideas?
> oh and my fathers company is http://www.Mountaire.com  for anyone interested.
>
> Ryan

2000\02\10@215929 by Ryan Pogge

flavicon
face
I will have to ask my father.
its up to him realy.
I will have many more details tommorow ...watch for the post
Ryan



{Quote hidden}

2000\02\10@220301 by Ryan Pogge

flavicon
face
that seems one of the best ideas so far,
Ill let my dad look over it,
I will actualy be posting more info tommorow night as so many
people replied, more "details"... look for it.
thanks a bunch I will keep you posted.
Ryan


{Quote hidden}

2000\02\10@220716 by Glenn West

flavicon
face
Actually, you just got it.

The problem is, changing the feeding of the birds causes big problems
on multiple frongs. But a thermal imaging system with vision can
"find" the bird, and then "weigh" it. With enhancements it can
actually even detect sick birds. For a "large" house,
a distrubted array of "sensors" would be used, and a PC
to grab the data. Use "enet for the sensors.

Each sensor counts the bird in the area, and figures the "thermal"
image size, and the "temp" of the bird. Counts, and figures it out.

Need to gather data a few times, but a comercial system can be made.

Reduce it to a image sensor, a fpga, and a ethernet interface, in a
industrial box. hang them above the lights.

Counts chickens on the fly, and keeps track of there health, average age,
and weight distribution. Need one pc to monitor, collect and summerize the
data.

At 09:55 PM 2/10/00 -0800, you wrote:
{Quote hidden}

-----------------------------------------------------
Glenn West - Deputy Director, Infocomm Lab
Kent Ridge Digital Labs (KRDL)
Voice: (65) 874-8210 Fax: (65) 776-8109
21 Heng Mui Keng Terrace
Singapore 119613 Singapore
-----------------------------------------------------

2000\02\10@221106 by TIM

flavicon
face
maybe a sliding moving wall just above the ground level but not to high that
the squakers can go under and just push them slowly into the weighing
station..load cell..wheatstone configuration..weighing the total and then a
visual bill count...by camera?
{Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@221120 by David Covick

flavicon
face
Ryan,

My solution is this...........

Before market,  weigh out a hundred or so by hand... average the
numbers.
this is to make sure they are at optimum weight before market, providing
maximum proffit.

This takes care of all the solutions thus far.

Some things never change :)

2000\02\10@221131 by Jeff King

flavicon
face
The only problem I see with this solution is what about the
glutton chicken? That is, chickens that love to eat and get
greedy at the feeding station? As these chickens likely are
getting more then their fair share, they will be heavier then
most. And as they are getting more turns at the feeding station,
then this will slant your sample size to be the larger bird.

Any type of sampling system needs to be random and have
enough samples that local clusters cannot influnce the result.

-Jeff


Ryan Pogge wrote:

{Quote hidden}

2000\02\10@221517 by Wagner Lipnharski

flavicon
face
By the funny part of it, why not mix into the chicken food large amount
of Cesium-137 or Uranium-235 powder and use a geiger counter to find out
which chicken site is more radioative?  You could probably recognize
heavier chickens at night, they will literaly "glow" brighter.  This
could be a nice use of nuclear waste material... problem is, you would
need a special documentation of transfer (DOE/NRC Form 741) to transport
those chicken...(classed as nuclear material). hehe

Wagner

2000\02\10@222158 by John Orhan

flavicon
face
Obviously you are all missing the point! Everybody knows that the only
reliable way to count chickens accurately is with a rolling-pin - of
coarse!!

{Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@222421 by John Orhan

flavicon
face
Again you're missing the point! Chicken waste byproduct is NOT decreasing
the weight of the chicken, rather only moving it - so the original idea of
weight still holds good!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

{Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@223009 by David Covick

flavicon
face
> Ryan,
>
> My solution is this...........
>
> Before market,  weigh out a hundred or so by hand... average the
> numbers.
> this is to make sure they are at optimum weight before market, providing
> maximum proffit.
>
> This takes care of all the solutions thus far.
>
> Some things never change :)
>

Why not just build-up a few PIC based scales to do the math?......and pay a
hungry college student to catch chickens?.......Ryan...you must know a few?
:)

2000\02\10@223431 by John Orhan

flavicon
face
ARE YOU LISTENING!! wEIGHT DON'T MATTER!! CHICKEN WEIGHS SAME!!!

-----Original Message-----
From: David Covick [.....dacKILLspamspam.....WEST.NET]
Sent: Friday, 11 February 2000 2:23
To: EraseMEPICLISTspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTMITVMA.MIT.EDU
Subject: Re: Chickens [NOT OT!]


{Quote hidden}

Why not just build-up a few PIC based scales to do the math?......and pay a
hungry college student to catch chickens?.......Ryan...you must know a few?
:)

2000\02\10@223846 by Stuart

flavicon
face
You could always send them to market wearing cement boots, this would have a
two fold benefit. 1: they would always be minimum weight 2: They wouldn't
run around as much when they had their heads chopped off, or even better you
could line them all up on the side of a bridge at night, put bags over their
heads and push em all in at once that way they get washed at the same time.
You could call them Mafia Chooks. (and to think I'm wasting my time in
electronics)
Regards
Stuart
{Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@224110 by Ryan Pogge

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yea ,
but thats what they do now!
we want high tech electrical solution...maybee ....
Thanks!
Ryan


{Quote hidden}

2000\02\10@224120 by Ryan Pogge

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ahh,
yep that makes sense, the "imaging systems" are
starting to sound better.
more tommorow..
Ryan

{Quote hidden}

2000\02\10@224301 by TIM

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if all chickens weigh the same then why are we discussing this weight issue?

-----Original Message-----
From: John Orhan <JOrhanspamspam_OUTEDM.COM.AU>
To: @spam@PICLISTKILLspamspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU <KILLspamPICLISTKILLspamspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU>
Date: Thursday, February 10, 2000 8:33 PM
Subject: Re: Chickens [NOT OT!]


{Quote hidden}

2000\02\10@224312 by Ryan Pogge

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well actualy the feed is dispensed in a feeder system.... there are feeder
stations.
and the birds tend to have zones ..yes..

> Seek is sprinkled on the floor for the birds to eat, and they eat
> randomly, but stay in there zones. Hmmm.

2000\02\10@224321 by David Covick

flavicon
face
> > Ryan,
> >
> > My solution is this...........
> >
> > Before market,  weigh out a hundred or so by hand... average the
> > numbers.
> > this is to make sure they are at optimum weight before market, providing
> > maximum proffit.
> >
> > This takes care of all the solutions thus far.
> >
> > Some things never change :)
> >
>
> Why not just build-up a few PIC based scales to do the math?......and pay
a
> hungry college student to catch chickens?.......Ryan...you must know a
few?
> :)
>

Ryan,
This will get you started:

http://dustball.com/hardware/scale/

Another PIC project.......it should please you that it is just another "data
logger" :)

2000\02\10@224332 by Ryan Pogge

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grin :-)


> By the funny part of it, why not mix into the chicken food large amount
> of Cesium-137 or Uranium-235 powder and use a geiger counter to find out
> which chicken site is more radioative?  You could probably recognize
> heavier chickens at night, they will literaly "glow" brighter.  This
> could be a nice use of nuclear waste material... problem is, you would
> need a special documentation of transfer (DOE/NRC Form 741) to transport
> those chicken...(classed as nuclear material). hehe
>
> Wagner

2000\02\10@224341 by Ryan Pogge

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not 10,000 at a time though!
heheh


> Obviously you are all missing the point! Everybody knows that the only
> reliable way to count chickens accurately is with a rolling-pin - of
> coarse!!
>
> {Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@224654 by David Covick

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yea,.... :)

I know this is the current method......
This is high-tech :)

Chickens are "low-tech"



{Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@224741 by Ryan Pogge

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I know a few yes... :-)
ok a pic based scale... but again only wieghing 100 ....
how acurate is it REALLY?
I mean with 5,000 or 10,000 birds...
I think maybee some type of imaging system that can measure many birds at
once? is that possible?



{Quote hidden}

few?
> :)

2000\02\10@225726 by David Covick

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Ryan,

Sample methods can be very good.  I use them on a daily basis.

Take a look at MIL-STD-105E.....or similar.

Sample size for 10,000 birds is only 200 :)

Sample 200 birds and you have it done.  The military believes in it. :)





{Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@225737 by Ryan Pogge

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weight does matter grasshopper!
not all chickens wiegh the same. hence the point of trying to weigh them in
the first place!


> ARE YOU LISTENING!! wEIGHT DON'T MATTER!! CHICKEN WEIGHS SAME!!!
>
> {Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@225936 by Ryan Pogge

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face
heheh
sopranochooks
??

> You could always send them to market wearing cement boots, this would have
a
> two fold benefit. 1: they would always be minimum weight 2: They wouldn't
> run around as much when they had their heads chopped off, or even better
you
> could line them all up on the side of a bridge at night, put bags over
their
> heads and push em all in at once that way they get washed at the same
time.
> You could call them Mafia Chooks. (and to think I'm wasting my time in
> electronics)
> Regards
> Stuart
> {Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@225948 by Ryan Pogge

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hehe great!
I will look at it.


> > > Ryan,
> > >
> > > My solution is this...........
> > >
> > > Before market,  weigh out a hundred or so by hand... average the
> > > numbers.
> > > this is to make sure they are at optimum weight before market,
providing
> > > maximum proffit.
> > >
> > > This takes care of all the solutions thus far.
> > >
> > > Some things never change :)
> > >
> >
> > Why not just build-up a few PIC based scales to do the math?......and
pay
{Quote hidden}

"data
> logger" :)

2000\02\10@230135 by Ryan Pogge

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oh,
well we want to make them high tech then!

> yea,.... :)
>
> I know this is the current method......
> This is high-tech :)
>
> Chickens are "low-tech"
>
>
>
> {Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@230335 by Ryan Pogge

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they don't weigh the same.
they are all different, some are fat pigs(well chickens) and some are runts
you must average them all to get an average wieght elese you may end u[p
wieghing a fat one and thinking that they are all ready when they are not.


> if all chickens weigh the same then why are we discussing this weight
issue?
>
> {Original Message removed}

2000\02\10@230948 by Glenn West

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face
Actually if you go to circuit cellar, when steve
was writing for byte, he proposed people counting this way.


At 10:39 PM 2/10/00 -0800, you wrote:
{Quote hidden}

-----------------------------------------------------
Glenn West - Deputy Director, Infocomm Lab
Kent Ridge Digital Labs (KRDL)
Voice: (65) 874-8210 Fax: (65) 776-8109
21 Heng Mui Keng Terrace
Singapore 119613 Singapore
-----------------------------------------------------

2000\02\10@231201 by TIM

flavicon
face
-----Original Message-----
Subject: Re: Chickens [NOT OT!]


>I know a few yes... :-)
>ok a pic based scale... but again only wieghing 100 ....
>how acurate is it REALLY?
>I mean with 5,000 or 10,000 birds...



maybe a fence with different sized holes cut in it ...6" round 7"-8"-9" with
a scale on the other side with the feed? optical sensor to count each
interupt..(chicken)then chicken steps on scale  giving weight?

<G> i want   the kernel...c'mon kfc.     can you figure out how to inject
with barbee Q  before i buy the bird?

2000\02\10@234532 by Sean Breheny

face picon face
Ryan,

How accurate does the weight need to be? Even if you could get every
chicken to step on a scale momentarily, the action of stepping and the
vibration it sets up will mean that the weight will actually be varying for
a couple of seconds after steping on the scale. Unless you could guarantee
that the same chicken is still on the scale after a second or two, it would
seem to me that you would have difficulty in getting you errors below
several %.

If this is OK (or if we could find some way around it), you could just make
all the chickens walk single-file through a narrow walkway which has a
scale in its floor. You could perhaps use food or people to encourage/drive
them through the narrow walkway. You could have several walkways to allow
the process to go faster.

I am also curious: why does the average weight of a bird help you much? Do
they really all reach optimum weight at the same time? Or, is it just that
you have to take them all to market at the same time so you just want to
know when the overall weight of all of the chickens combined has peaked?

Another possibility: install a synthetic-rubber bladder in a portion of the
floor and then use that to weigh a large number simultaneously. When they
walk onto it, it changes the air pressure.

Sean

At 08:24 PM 2/10/00 -0800, you wrote:
{Quote hidden}

| Sean Breheny
| Amateur Radio Callsign: KA3YXM
| Electrical Engineering Student
\--------------=----------------
Save lives, please look at http://www.all.org
Personal page: http://www.people.cornell.edu/pages/shb7
TakeThisOuTshb7EraseMEspamspam_OUTcornell.edu ICQ #: 3329174

2000\02\10@234943 by William K. Borsum

flavicon
face
A couple of assumptions:
chickens roam around in the barn--not caged like egg layers.
Chickens like to eat/drink.

Two sections to the barn area with a chute in between.
Scale is in the chute.
chute is designed so only one chicken can be in the chute and on the scale
at a time.
Water is on one side, food on the other.
Every chicken WILL move through the chute at least once a day and get weighed.
probably multiple weighings per bird, therefore increased accuracy/sample
size.
Use the scale you've got.

Now for the pic part--stick a keeloq or other rf ID tag on each bird for ID
that triggers the scale when it goes through.
Track weight gain per bird on an individual basis.
Gate the outlet of the chute to a holding area for the nice fat ones, or
for the underweight culls, by age of bird, etc.

Gee, that ought to be worth free chicken for life. :-)
Kelly




At 08:24 PM 2/10/00 -0800, you wrote:
{Quote hidden}

William K. Borsum, P.E. -- OEM Dataloggers and Instrumentation Systems
<RemoveMEborsumspamTakeThisOuTdascor.com> & <http://www.dascor.com>San Diego, California, USA

2000\02\10@235203 by Erik Reikes

flavicon
face
Ok a simple solution would be to install a bunch of scales around the floor
of the coop at basically random points.  Even though the chickens stay in
one spot, the sample would be random.  Make the scales so that only one
chicken can stand on it (not sure how, that sounds like an ME problem or
something for a poultry behaviorist or something).

If you want a 100 samples install a few dozen scales.  I can't believe that
they are so territorial that they never move.  Do some filtering on your
data to get 'typical' chicken size (reject chickens standing half off, or
them jumping on the scale or whatever), average the results.


Erik Reikes
Software Engineer
Xsilogy, Inc.

ereikesEraseMEspam.....xsilogy.com
ph : (858) 535-5113
fax : (858) 535-5163
cell : (858) 663-1206

2000\02\11@003418 by Ryan Pogge

flavicon
face
> A couple of assumptions:
> chickens roam around in the barn--not caged like egg layers.
> Chickens like to eat/drink.

yes/yes/yes

> Two sections to the barn area with a chute in between.
> Scale is in the chute.
> chute is designed so only one chicken can be in the chute and on the scale
> at a time.
> Water is on one side, food on the other.
> Every chicken WILL move through the chute at least once a day and get
weighed.
> probably multiple weighings per bird, therefore increased accuracy/sample
> size.
> Use the scale you've got.

> Now for the pic part--stick a keeloq or other rf ID tag on each bird for
ID
> that triggers the scale when it goes through.
> Track weight gain per bird on an individual basis.
> Gate the outlet of the chute to a holding area for the nice fat ones, or
> for the underweight culls, by age of bird, etc.

err.... that is the bad part we are talking more than 1,000 houses
containing 5,000 birds each ouch :-)

> Gee, that ought to be worth free chicken for life. :-)

when someone comes up with the correct answer that may very well be
possible!

2000\02\11@003443 by Ryan Pogge

flavicon
face
the simple scale idea has been tried, it just didn't work weel.
its not that only one chicken stands on it but rather only a few..
and to get a good sample you need to use LOTS of scales. also its hard to
get only one to stand on it, and also to get it to stand fully on it and not
bounce the scale around.
Ryan


> Ok a simple solution would be to install a bunch of scales around the
floor
> of the coop at basically random points.  Even though the chickens stay in
> one spot, the sample would be random.  Make the scales so that only one
> chicken can stand on it (not sure how, that sounds like an ME problem or
> something for a poultry behaviorist or something).
>
> If you want a 100 samples install a few dozen scales.  I can't believe
that
{Quote hidden}

2000\02\11@003508 by John Orhan

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LOOK GUYS....A CHOOK MAY JUST WALK AROUND AL DAY MAKING MEASUREMENTS
DIFFICULT, BUT THEY'VE GOT TO SLEEP SOMETIMES....YES? AND THASTS MY WHOLE
POINT REALLY, WEIGHT DOESN'T MATTER WHEN YOUR AVERAGING ALL THE CHICKEN. AND
IT CERTAINLY DOESN'T MATTER WHEN THEY'RE BEING SMAHED AGAINST A WALL......

{Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@003519 by John Orhan

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face
O.K....so we take longer than expected! At least we'll know they're all
really dead!! won't we??

-----Original Message-----
From: Ryan Pogge [RemoveMErpoggeEraseMEspamEraseMEMICHAELANGELO.NET]
Sent: Friday, 11 February 2000 5:40
To: RemoveMEPICLISTspam_OUTspamKILLspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU
Subject: Re: Chickens [NOT OT!]


not 10,000 at a time though!
heheh


{Quote hidden}

2000\02\11@004157 by John Orhan

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A good point! I think what we're really looking at is a type of chicken
'emulator'. Statistically determine where and what ze chicken will do.
Weighing don't matter then right?

{Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@004210 by John Orhan

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face
OK....SO WE'RE BACK TO THE "LETS WEIGH THE CHICKEN COOP" ROUTINE THEN DEDUCT
THE COUP WEIGHT DIVIDED BY THWE NUMBER OF CHOOKS. IT DON'T MATTER IF/WHERE
THEY CRAP SINCE THAT IS ALL PART OF THE AVERAGE WEIGHT ANYWAY.

{Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@004457 by TIM

flavicon
face
turn the caps off really anoying us near sited people......c'mon now.
-----Original Message-----
From: John Orhan <RemoveMEJOrhanKILLspamspamEDM.COM.AU>
To: PICLISTSTOPspamspamspam_OUTMITVMA.MIT.EDU <spamBeGonePICLISTSTOPspamspamEraseMEMITVMA.MIT.EDU>
Date: Thursday, February 10, 2000 10:34 PM
Subject: Re: Chickens [NOT OT!]


>LOOK GUYS....A CHOOK MAY JUST WALK AROUND AL DAY MAKING MEASUREMENTS
>DIFFICULT, BUT THEY'VE GOT TO SLEEP SOMETIMES....YES? AND THASTS MY WHOLE
>POINT REALLY, WEIGHT DOESN'T MATTER WHEN YOUR AVERAGING ALL THE CHICKEN.
AND
{Quote hidden}

providing
{Quote hidden}

2000\02\11@005046 by John Orhan

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face
Told you....you must  - execute the chickens....execute the chickens
chickens....execute the chickens
chickens....execute the chickens
chickens....execute the chickens

{Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@010607 by John Orhan

flavicon
face
O.K...so I lied a little. It does matter if you want to keep the chook
alive. Do you???

-----Original Message-----
From: TIM [.....stm800spam_OUTspamCITY-NET.COM]
Sent: Friday, 11 February 2000 7:39
To: TakeThisOuTPICLIST.....spamTakeThisOuTMITVMA.MIT.EDU
Subject: Re: Chickens [NOT OT!]


turn the caps off really anoying us near sited people......c'mon now.
-----Original Message-----
From: John Orhan <TakeThisOuTJOrhanKILLspamspamspamEDM.COM.AU>
To: .....PICLISTspamRemoveMEMITVMA.MIT.EDU <RemoveMEPICLISTspamspamBeGoneMITVMA.MIT.EDU>
Date: Thursday, February 10, 2000 10:34 PM
Subject: Re: Chickens [NOT OT!]


>LOOK GUYS....A CHOOK MAY JUST WALK AROUND AL DAY MAKING MEASUREMENTS
>DIFFICULT, BUT THEY'VE GOT TO SLEEP SOMETIMES....YES? AND THASTS MY WHOLE
>POINT REALLY, WEIGHT DOESN'T MATTER WHEN YOUR AVERAGING ALL THE CHICKEN.
AND
{Quote hidden}

providing
{Quote hidden}

2000\02\11@011646 by piclist.com

face picon face
Ok, Admin hat on!

Serious responses to this question involving ideas that actually use a PIC
in some interesting way should have a subject line of
Chickens [NOT OT!]

If you want to post jokes, funny ideas, shouting, low tech ideas that don't
really involve PICs or the like and you want to remain on the list: Change
the subject line to:
Chickens [OT]

This is the type of discussion that would be better handled by IRC. Lots of
talk, little content.

James Newton, PICList Admin #3
@spam@jamesnewtonRemoveMEspamEraseMEpiclist.com
1-619-652-0593 phone
http://www.piclist.com

{Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@033812 by Ian Stewart

flavicon
face
Do your chicken perch at night? If so then rig a sample of the perches to
measure weight as per cattle scales (use a PIC) and at the same instant you
record the weight photograph the perch to count the number of chickens on
it.

{Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@055649 by Tom Handley

picon face
  Ryan, excuse me for a few while I pick (no pun intended) myself off the
floor and dry my eyes ;-)

  Up until 5 years ago I lived on a 20 acre farm where, amongst livestock,
I had chickens. I didn't have time to go through all the responses but I
have not laughed this hard in a long time. Anyway, my only experience with
commercial growers is Willamette Egg Farms but those chickens are bred for
eggs and they all live in little cages so that doesn't apply to your
problem. Have you tried contacting major farms like Foster to see how they
deal with it? I could not make a suggestion without seeing your operation
and talking with your father. I'm real skeptical about the whole thing and
certainly herding chickens through <anything>. Though they will follow the
flock for food, they also peck and scratch at anything in sight. You might
consider selling them and getting into sheep, cattle, or horses. It would be
a heck of a lot easier ;-)

  If all else fails, you could always sell them to the USAF. They have a
large `chicken cannon' that fires birds into radomes and canopies ;-)

  - Tom

PSBS: Come to think of it, Foster may just be a large co-op. What I meant
is talking to other commercial farms to see if anyone is doing anything
innovative other than the old method. It's been my experience that, despite
the competition, folks are quick to help each other and share ideas.

At 08:24 PM 2/10/00 -0800, Ryan Pogge wrote:
{Quote hidden}

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tom Handley
New Age Communications
Since '75 before "New Age" and no one around here is waiting for UFOs ;-)

2000\02\11@061146 by paulb

flavicon
face
Lance Allen wrote:

> I would imagine a moving barrier, the width of the shed.

 We think alike.  I thought about that one too (only just had a chance
to read the thread).  I was about to ask the preliminary question; "What
obstacles are on the floor?".

 Of course, this barrier would do double duty mucking-out the floor at
the same time - presumably a sweeper carriage running back and forth
underneath in the manner of an inkjet (previous incarnation: dot-matrix)
printer.

 There are alternative topologies - a fixed barrier dividing the shed
in one direction and corresponding to the supports, and mobile "sweeps"
moving back and forth on each side, herding chickens through the fixed
barrier.

 There are questions of behaviour here - "territoriality" and "pecking
order" may in open-range (or similar) areas, lead to inequalities in
growth.  Constantly, albeit slowly, keeping the birds on the move, may
even this out.  OTOH, it might have undesirable effects, perhaps stress
not so much due to the movement itself, as being herded together.
--
 Cheers,
       Paul B.

2000\02\11@081538 by Ricardo Seixas

picon face
Ryan,

       Here's is my approach.
       First assumption, the weight is directly proportional to the size of the
chicken.
       With a PIC you can build a laser line scanner to draw a square grid of
lines, say  1m x 1m spaced every 10 cm or less, this grid will be draw on
the floor, if there's no chicken on the grid and the floor is flat, the
grid is perfect, if there's a chicken or more  on the grid, the image of
the grid will be a rough surface, with a CCD camera (or two for stereo
vision) you can 'see' the grid and process the image on a PC to average the
surface height and count the white spots and determine the area they occupy
inside the square, with area x height you get the volume of live meat. With
the 'live chicken density' (kg/m^3) * volume / chicken count you can get
the average weight.
       The system can be mounted on a X,Y rail or cable (driven by a PIC) for ex.
4 meters high or more depending on your roof, the idea is to move the laser
scanner and camera(s) to 'scan' the entire area.
       On the PC software you can put 'dead zones' for example where exists water
or food feeders so the scan safely skip those areas.
       There's also a possibility to scan dead chickens on the process,
during the entire scan area a map is constructed and the white spots are
marked
if a spot doesn't move say 5 scans it's assumed to be dead (or sleeping...
:) )
and can page the 'chickens administrator' to remove it. And to help the
process iluminate the local with the laser...
       Going further, with all the data collected you can trace a graphic with
food/water time/weight $ etc...
       This proccess is no intrusive so you can leave the chickens do their job
(eat,eat,eat...) without disturbing and reducing stress and territoriality
makes no diference.
       The bigger cost I see is the software on the PC and the time to develop it.
       This stuff can earn a PhD on MIT... :)








-----------------------------------
Ricardo Seixas
EraseMErseixasspam@spam@pobox.com
-----------------------------------

2000\02\11@101145 by Alan King

picon face
 My grandparents raised chickens, so I've actually been in a house more
than a few times.  First thing to do is make some correct simplifying
assumptions..

1.  What you're trying to do is improve the decision on when to take the
chickens.  To go from a random sampled best guess to something more
concrete.  Only problem is, a person around this kind of thing will
become very skilled at making this decision.  So you have to decide if
you need a cheap system that does this ok, or an expensive one that does
it as exact as possible?  You're very unlikely to get both, and it'll be
hard to even just get cheap and any better than done by a person..
2.  Realize that you'll never get perfect, period.  Hell, as hot a
houses are normally, by the time you weigh that last one, the first has
wilted a pound or two away already.  Only way to get exact would be kill
them while you weigh them.  (Not that bad an idea, you could charge $10
an hour to let people hit the electrocution button, there are plenty of
twisted people out there.  But you need live delivery to the plant
though..)

 First thought came to my mind was as William said, food on one side,
water on the other.  But you still need many paths and scales, wouldn't
do to have a lot die because 5k chickens can't get through the chute at
once.  Yes, some chickens will be over/under ideal.  But that happens
anyway no matter what you do.  Doesn't matter anyway, with 5k chickens
you'll tend to get similar distributions from lot to lot.  If there's a
glutton chicken or a few, there'll tend to be a similar amount in all
groups.  Yes, sometimes you might still take them a little early or
late, but the best you can hope for is an improvement towards ideal
anyway.  Any automatic system that gets most birds will be more
generally accurate in the long run.

 So forget about what the actual weight of each bird is.  Just
integrate the total force applied to the sensors each day etc and keep
track of that.  You don't need absolute data at all, a bird doesn't have
to be still to get that, and it's still proportional to weight.  But
you'll still have to watch out for things like how they tend to huddle
when it's cold and rest when it's hot, but run like fools when it's
moderate.

 Still not sure how much whatever you do will gain you though.  Feed
taken, water taken, and temperature integrated with how old they are in
days will probably give just as accurate results vs all the
maintainability issues with an electronic solution.  I know there's some
variability in how old they are when delivered, but the curve will
quickly match up to the general curve and you'll know.  And it's much
easier to automate the food and water supply vs temperature etc to get
optimum chickens instead of trying to figure out if your chickens are at
optimum after the fact.





Ryan Pogge wrote:
>
> the simple scale idea has been tried, it just didn't work weel.
> its not that only one chicken stands on it but rather only a few..
> and to get a good sample you need to use LOTS of scales. also its hard to
> get only one to stand on it, and also to get it to stand fully on it and not
> bounce the scale around.
> Ryan
err.... that is the bad part we are talking more than 1,000 houses
containing 5,000 birds each ouch :-)

2000\02\11@122049 by gsawyer

flavicon
face
Hmm...

Seeing as I have just returned to the list after a
fair break, I figure I should contribute something
(well attempt to anyway).

 How's this..

If you provide a narrow(ish) passageway, that has a
low inertia "teeter-totter" arrangement, load sensor,
and micro-switch setup.

So the chickens pass through the passageway, flip the
t-t which also acts as a counter, so you have not only
a weight measurement, but also a count of the number of
um..  er.. "victims" that have passed through, so you can
derive an average from the collected data - into a PIC of course !

Regards,

        Glenville T. Sawyer

VK5ZCF

2000\02\11@124530 by Byron A Jeff

face picon face
>
> > A couple of assumptions:
> > chickens roam around in the barn--not caged like egg layers.
> > Chickens like to eat/drink.
>
> yes/yes/yes

That's good. The last question is whether or not a chicken will move from
one area to another when they get hungry/thirsty? What you want to create is
the impetus for the chickens to move through the system.


>
> > Two sections to the barn area with a chute in between.

You can get rid of the tags below if you use 4 sections and set up the
chutes so that they only go in one direction by making it easy to go
into one end and impossible (or difficult) to go into the other. The reason
for 4 sections is to create a single direction flow. So If you have
a setup like:

---------
| F > H |
|-^---v-|
| H < W |
---------

Where F and W are food and water and the H are holding areas. The arrows are
these one way chutes (simply done by putting a door/gate on the end to block.

Now presume that the want for food and water will motivate the chickens to
go through the chutes. May even entice them with a small amount of bait.
Or entice them with the sound of feed/water.

Measure the chickens in one, any, or all, of the chutes.

The chickens will gravitate naturally from the food pen through the holding
pen to the water pen and back.

each chicken will be measured once per cycle because they have to go through
all 4 pens to get back to that same scale.

The motivation to eat and drink will move all the chickens in the coop though
the system.

Cost will be dividing the coop into the pens, and setting up the chutes.

BTW it's just as feasible to divide the coop up into multiple stacked
horizontal or vertical segments too.

{Quote hidden}

Unnecessary if the cycle is one way.

BAJ

2000\02\11@144755 by Thomas McGahee

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The scale on the ground idea is not so bad if you just have a
way to get the chickens to get on the scale.

How about bribing the chickens by using a little food as
incentive? Imagine a small enclosure with motor operated
door. Just outside the open door you have a machine that
periodically deposits some chicken feed. When you sense
that a chicken has come over to get the chicken feed, you
deposit a bit of chicken feed *inside* the enclosure,
right on top of the electronic weighing scale.

When a chicken enters the weighing area you bring down the door
so only one chicken is inside at a time. The chicken
is now on the scale so you weigh it. When you finish
weighing, you open the door so the chicken can leave
after eating.

You might be able to eliminate the door
if you already know pretty much what the average bird weighs,
since then you could tolerate readings based on several
birds. This will not work if the weight range is too
large.

Continue the procedure at random intervals
Keep a running average of weight. Once you
have an average based on, say 100 valid readings,
display it, send it to a PC, or whatever you want done
with it.

When do I get my $1,000 bucks???

Fr. Tom McGahee




{Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@151511 by Anton van Straaten

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A simple, relatively inexpensive technique would be a roaming robot scale.
It would have a weighing platform big enough to support just one chicken,
and a food dispenser, perhaps containing some type of food that's more
desirable than the normal feed (is there a chicken equivalent of catnip?)

When the robot detects a chicken on the platform, it would weigh it.  After
getting a solid reading, it would close the food dispenser, and tilt the
scale surface to tip the chicken off.  It would then move off to another
area of the barn, reset itself, open the food dispenser and wait for another
chicken.

It would be a heck of a lot cheaper and simpler than developing a
vision-based system or criss-crossing the barn with laser beams or
chicken-herding barriers.

But if you really like the vision-based approach, the idea above could be
complicated by adding a retinal scanner at the food dispenser.  That way,
you'd know if you were weighing the same chicken twice.

Anton

2000\02\11@153605 by MegaBolt

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2000\02\11@163623 by Don Hyde

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An extremely simple-minded robot could let the scale wander around into
different chicken's territories.  Battery power and an RF reporting system
could make it pretty much automatic.  It wouldn't have to move very often or
very far to keep sampling different territories.  It could auto-tare to
compensate for the gradual buildup of chicken waste products, and signal
when human intervention was needed for cleaning or battery changes.  Size
the batteries right and you could do all its maintenance when you cycled a
batch of chickens off to market.

> {Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@172849 by victor faria

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how about a scale with a infared sensor put the scale on the floor when the
chicken steps on it the sensor would register the wheight it may take a long
time to get 100 but put up several scales and so what if it takes 1 or more
days?
as far as waste piling up on the scale maybe have it tare out after every
wheight or have a sprinkler system to wash it .
victor faria
----- Original Message -----
From: "TIM" <@spam@stm800spam_OUTspam.....CITY-NET.COM>
To: <spamBeGonePICLISTEraseMEspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU>
Sent: Friday, February 11, 2000 1:38 AM
Subject: Re: Chickens [NOT OT!]


> if all chickens weigh the same then why are we discussing this weight
issue?
>
> {Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@173448 by victor faria

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ok here goes idea is water put the water blow ground in cups at every cup
station put a scale
and only water at certain  hours of the day when the chicken goes to drink
the scale would register the wheight.
victor faria
{Original Message removed}

2000\02\11@180415 by Andrew Hooper

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a sensor activates a burst of air from an air cannon under the floor to
launch
the chicken in the air, depending on how high the chicken gets will
determine
the weight of the chicken, Use a camera to determine how high the chicken
gets.

An arm could also come out of the wall to swat the heavy chickens to the
left
and the lite ones to the right, you could use another air cannon to do this
but
would not be as spectacular as having a bat/racket swat each chicken, this
also ensures that the meat is tender.

Also because a Live Chicken would resist by using its wings it would be
possible
to sort out the dead ones from the live one, the ones that actually hit the
wall are
dead, the ones thet dont a are not, then again the ones that are dead are
not going
to be wandering onto the air cannon :).

see........ resistance IS futile
Hmmm, was that $1000 US :), thats $1800nz :)

Andrew Hooper

2000\02\12@094956 by Randy A.

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Just my opionion, but I think we have heard enough about the chickens.  If
there were an economical and fairly easy way to do this, it would already be
done because this is a HUGE industry in this country and the guys with the
bucks would have already figured out how to do it.  It can be done, but not
cheaply or even at a medium cost range.  One would indeed have to rig a
completely separate floor arrangement, suspended by stress gauges or
something similar, get ALL the chickens onto the floor and hope that none of
them decide to go "potty" while they are on it.  Weigh the total and then you
would have to count each and every one of them and find the average weight.
This would cost quite a lot to do and it wouldn't even be all that accurate
as you would probably not get an accurate count and we all know that at least
some of them are going to mess up that floor and that will add to the weight.

There are just too many uncontrollable variables involved to do it within any
reasonable cost frame.

So,  it would appear that hiring some minumum wage folks or just wait until
you take them to market and find out then.

2000\02\12@105303 by Donald L Burdette

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I'll build on the ideas of others (perhaps this means I'll have to share
the $$...NOT!)

Put the scale in front of the feeding or watering station, as others have
suggested, but add a trap door so that if the chicken is at the right
weight, the all-important PIC processor opens the door and the chicken
gets dropped into a chute and sent to the processing plant.  This way,
EVERY chicken is at optimal weight when sent.  Talk about QUALITY!
REPEATIBILITY! STANDARDIZATION! Whew! (Any more buzzwords I can use?)

On the lighter side, you could put boiling oil (or freezer) beneath the
trapdoor.  Talk about FRESH!

If you don't have room to build trapdoors and chutes beneath your houses,
use the catapult to get chickens out of the place.  If you have a strong
enough catapult, you can throw them direct to the processing plant,
saving transportation costs.  Since the chickens are all the same weight,
trajectory won't be a problem.  High velocities may be able to de-feather
the chickens during transport.

Or you could use vacuum funnels to suck the chickens off the scale.  It
doesn't matter if you suck the guts out, because you had to do that
anyway!  Or use a vacuum transport system like some stores and banks use
to transport money canisters.  Unfortunately, this idea sucks.

If you really want to use trucks, but them beneath the trapdoor, or at
the end of the vacuum tube, or on the catapult target.  Use a scale to
determine when the truck is full and should be sent off to the plant.
The PIC's could be networked to pause sending chickens while the trucks
are being changed.  Come to think of it, they could count chickens being
put in the truck, and not need to weigh it.

If you use more than one of my ideas, I'll give you a 10% volume
discount.

Waiting for your check.
Don

2000\02\14@093253 by M. Adam Davis

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The chickens would, after awhile, start avoiding the robot, and only the
terminally stupid would be measured...

-Adam

Anton van Straaten wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2000\02\14@093917 by Dave VanHorn

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> The chickens would, after awhile, start avoiding the robot, and only the
> terminally stupid would be measured...


Which leads us to  "Planet of the Chickens!"

2000\02\14@213759 by engalt

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Then you could evolve a new breed of super smart chickens.  Darwin, where are you?

"M. Adam Davis" wrote:

{Quote hidden}

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