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Beyond the Bale : September 2018
ON FARM 65 ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE A new AWI-funded study is examining whether artificial intelligence (AI) technologies are able to automatically identify in young sheep several of the phenotypical traits that predict their lifetime performance – a solution that would help woolgrowers in their selection and productivity management decisions. R&D TO AID SELECTION The project’s objective is to provide proof of concept that the technology works and could potentially be adapted for commercial sheep farming systems. The premise on which the project is based is that it’s possible to use repeat digital photographs of several different views of a sheep in conjunction with an AI algorithm to determine bodyweight, body wrinkle, neck wrinkle, face cover and identify individual sheep. “The project team has designed and constructed an initial prototype of a staging rig in which sheep stand for the photographs that feed into the algorithm. The dimensions of the rig are based on weigh crates routinely used to weigh sheep,” said lead researcher Dr Mark Ferguson of neXtgen Agri. “The design has fixed cameras placed above Image of the initial prototype staging rig in which the sheep can be photographed from several angles. The digital images are then analysed by an artificial intelligence system to identify phenotypical traits in the sheep to assist in productivity management. the sheep, to the side of the sheep and in front of the sheep to collect high resolution images. The system will have the capacity to link the images to sheep EID and have the ability to extract meaningful information from the digital images and allow differentiation of the traits under investigation. The current prototype takes three images per second. “The project team has already written software to control the camera and allow the sheep EID and image number to be automatically archived awaiting further analysis through the machine learning process.” Following the completion of the proof of concept stage next year, a recommendation regarding further R&D investment in the technology will be provided by the researchers to AWI. serious farmers need a serious bit of gear you can’t go wrong with the clipex sheep handler Fully automated handler Up to 5 way fully automatic drafting Easily adjustable for various animal sizes Automatic pre-catch & catch Patented Automated anti- backing technology Full roll over access for full crutch, wig and pizzle blow Hot dipped galvanised construction CALL NOW! 1800 65 77 66 OR VISIT WWW.CLIPEX.COM.AU
In the Shops - September 2018