RFID tags used to report which birds are laying

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by sunspot, Jan 16, 2013.

  1. sunspot

    sunspot Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 16, 2013
    New Forest UK
    I have been experimenting with RFID tags on my chickens so that I can detect those that are the star performers.
    And those who just eat my food - hmmm….

    I have put up a web site to explain how this works at -

    http://www.sunspot.co.uk - click on item 12

    or go directly to
    http://www.sunspot.co.uk/Projects/RFID/Chickens_RFID.html

    I have received several emails asking for more details and offering other ideas so I thought I would encourage my contacts to join this club and make the debate more open here.

    There are several key issues:-

    1) I know of no source of RFID leg bands other than the wholesale sources (100 off minimum)
    So I have been experimenting with cheap RFID key fobs and nylon industrial ties - they seem to work very well. They look fairly large but are very light in weight and have not stopped the birds laying. They do not seem to be aware of them.

    2) Others are experimenting with Arduino boards - that might work but Linux routers let you report all results on a web page so you can follow progress when on holiday! And one of mine says on a speaker - "the feed hopper is getting low!" or "the electric fence is off!". I use the Basic programming language but you can use Python, Perl etc too.

    3) Perhaps the Raspberry Pi would be ideal for those new to all this. There is lots of support on the Web and lots of add on boards.

    4) For interest -my nslu2 (known to electronics hobby types as "The Slug") works very well and puts an HD webcam picture of the nest boxes on a web page at the same time as running the RFID)
     
  2. The Lazy L

    The Lazy L Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Slick!
     
  3. sunspot

    sunspot Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 16, 2013
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  4. Redcap

    Redcap Out Of The Brooder

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  5. sunspot

    sunspot Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 16, 2013
    New Forest UK
    Thanks Redcap - but the key fob tags are so very cheap from China on eBay - and the numbers are printed on them.

    They have been on for 3 weeks now and seem to be peck proof and not noticed by the birds.

    (Not sure where to put the coil for a wing tag)
     
  6. LBKS

    LBKS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Louisburg, KS
    I love this, I was thinking of something along the lines of this sort of project!

    I wonder if you could team this up with an egg-roll tilted nest box to get a clearer idea of who laid (by motion or...shoot, if you detected the egg by weight at the settling location, you could also collect weight data at the same time)?
     
  7. sunspot

    sunspot Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 16, 2013
    New Forest UK
    An interesting idea - I did learn to connect a Linux box to a USA postal scale for a different idea - http://www.sunspot.co.uk/Projects/Raspi/raspi-scale.html

    I do take a photo of each laying event to confirm which bird is which (I might have got the rings mixed up in the dark fitting session!)

    You really need a photo of the eggs after the laying event with the webcam. You could do that since the tags give a string of signals all the time the the bird is in the box.
    Or have a sensor at the exit ?




    But before that I have to sort the bees and the greenhouse. Perhaps it is a winter project!
     
  8. NTBugtraq

    NTBugtraq ex-Surgeon General

    Sunspot, are you still pursuing this project? I am very interested in trying to duplicate your efforts but lack the back ground in the modules. If you're still active with it, please respond here and I will pm you.
     
  9. sunspot

    sunspot Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 16, 2013
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    23 May 2015
    The tags are still attached and working well.
    (These are the key fobs with 2 nylon industrial ties)
    The birds show no sign of being bothered by them.
    fgmarshallatsunspotfullstopcodotuk
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2015
  10. NTBugtraq

    NTBugtraq ex-Surgeon General

    I would love to recreate what you have for my 10 nesting boxes. I was recently given a dozen hens in their 3rd season, and added them to my existing flock of a dozen hens in their first year. So at some point this year I expect some of the hens to stop laying.

    I have read your page on the project, and I realize I can't build this myself. Do you have any interest in building one for me and then sending it to me?

    If not, I'm not familiar with Linux, but your basic and HTML code are no problem. Can the slug be controlled from a terminal window on my PC? Can you point me to slug hardware? I've tried reading through your home page links, but darn its confusing...IMO there's a lot of knowledge expected from the reader.

    Help?
     

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