The adoption of IoT solutions continues to revolutionise the manner in which we address challenges across a range of sectors, and livestock farming is no exception. Researchers from the BISITE Group of the University of Salamanca are working on LambIoT, an innovative project in this field, under the TCUE University-Business Knowledge Transfer Plan (PC_TCUE21-23_005). The researchers have developed an innovative system to monitor the milk consumption of lambs during their lactation stage, providing farmers with unprecedented control over their flocks.

Livestock farming is undergoing a transformation driven by IoT solutions, and companies are recognising the benefits in terms of flexibility, adaptability and improved production and supply chain. In this context, this revolutionary project focuses on improving meat yields by intelligently monitoring milk consumption in lambs.


Monitoring lamb lactation with IoT

At the heart of LambIoT is a prototype capable of detecting the presence of lambs in the lactation area. Using RFID smart ear tags, the system identifies each lamb and records the amount of milk consumed via an intuitive platform. This innovative solution not only provides data on individual consumption, but also on the position of each lamb and other relevant information for farmers.

The hardware solution is divided into several key parts. Animal detection is achieved by photoelectric barriers, while animal identification uses RFID-based systems. Milk consumption is monitored with non-invasive flow meters, ensuring efficiency and avoiding health problems.

All these components are connected to a central PLC, which is responsible for data acquisition, transmission and control. Through methods based on artificial intelligence and machine learning, the collected data is processed to predict the meat yield of each lamb and other crucial parameters.

This innovative system has undergone rigorous testing on a real livestock farm for weeks, proving its effectiveness and usefulness. We are grateful to the TECUE programme for giving us the opportunity to develop this project, and we are confident that the obtained results will allow us to transfer this knowledge to future developments and projects in the livestock market.

This project represents not only a technological breakthrough, but also an invaluable tool for farmers seeking to optimise production and to ensure the welfare of their livestock, creating a more efficient and sustainable pathway for the livestock industry.

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