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© Thünen-Institut
[Translate to English:]
Institute of

AT Agricultural Technology


Automated Pig Localization

Model pigsty with locating system
© Thünen-Institut
Model pigsty with locating system

Automated Pig Localization in Pigsties

The current localization of pigs in pigsties can be done manually by animal observations, in a limited scope by RFID transponders or by video analysis, whereby the recognition of individual animals are problematic.

The localization data can be used for example to evaluate the animal husbandry, the individual animal welfare and the herd dynamics, so that problems can be detected and remedied faster by developed algorithms.

Background and Objective

The background of this project is the continuing rising trend of the number of pigs per farmer with the consequences of:

  • less time for individual animal control by farmers
  • continuous increasing demand of society for higher animal welfare in livestock farming

The aims of this project include:

  • permanent individual animal monitoring
  • online rating of animal welfare
  • Optimization of pigsty systems
  • increasing social acceptance for livestock farming

Target Group

  • Science and Research
  • Industrial Companies
  • Pig Farmers


  • selection an evaluation of suitable localization systems
  • integration of a localization system into a model pigsty
  • miniaturization of the localization technology for placing it into ear tags to develop sensor ear tags
  • development of an energy supply for the sensor ear tags
  • integration of the localization system into a pigsty (at first on a trial operation)
  • recording the localization data and developing algorithms to rate the individual animal welfare

Our Research Questions

  • Which localization system is the best for locating pigs in pigsties?
  • How to integrate the sensor technology into the ear tags for pigs?
  • How to ensure the power supply in the sensor?
  • Which animal welfare indicators can be derived from the localization data?
  • How to convey the optimization possibilities to the pig farmers?


Permanent task 7.2018

More Information

Project status: ongoing

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