Evaluation of an Accelerometer-Based Device for Testing the Softness of Bedding Materials Used for Livestock
Publikation im Journal Sensors
Autor: Karina Regina Weimar, Barbara Pichlbauer, Christian Guse, Johannes Peter Schramel, Christian Peham, Marc Drillich and Michael Iwersen
Abstract: Lying is a high priority behavior for dairy cows. As the quality of cubicles can influence their lying time, the interest in finding objective methods to assess the quality of floors has increased substantially over recent decades. This study aimed to evaluate a technical device for measuring elastic properties of floors for the application to bedding materials for cows. Ten different floor types were used: horse manure, recycled manure solids, bark mulch, sand, sawdust, and three different rubber mats. Horse manure and bark mulch were additionally tested with chopped straw as a top layer. Two devices of the same kind and two examiners were available for performing comparative measurements. Regression analyses and an ANOVA were conducted to compare the devices, ex-aminers, and different surfaces. Most of the floors differed significantly from each other. Sawdust was the softest material, followed by sand and recycled manure solids. The agreement between the devices (Lin’s concordance correlation coefficient (CCC) > 0.99, Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient (rS) = 0.99) and examiners (CCC = 0.99, rS = 0.99) was almost perfect. These findings indicate that this device can be used as a new method for assessing the softness of bedding materials for dairy cows objectively.
Citation: Weimar, K.R.; Pichlbauer, B.; Guse, C.; Schramel, J.P.; Peham, C.; Drillich, M.; Iwersen, M. Evaluation of an Accelerometer-Based Device for Testing the Softness of Bedding Materials Used for Livestock. Sensors 2022, 22, 8912. https://doi.org/10.3390/s22228912