BORIS Theses

BORIS Theses
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Effects of sensor ear tags with twin pin fixing system on health and well-being of cattle

Gobbo Oliveira Erünlü, Nicolle (2023). Effects of sensor ear tags with twin pin fixing system on health and well-being of cattle. (Thesis). Universität Bern, Bern

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Modern technologies are increasingly used to optimize livestock production. A new sensor ear tag (SET) containing GPS, accelerometer, RFID and Bluetooth technologies was tested in cattle in a free stall barn and in the alps in Switzerland. The SET was equipped with a battery and a solar panel designed to provide a durability for the whole animal life. A twin-pin fixing system ensured its correct positioning. The right ears of 12 newborn calves (NB) and 26 adolescents (AD) were tagged with the SET, while the left ears were tagged with official ear tag (OET). Animal welfare and comfort parameters were monitored. Exudate was observed in the ear of all the animals tagged with the SET between day 7 and day 21. Pain reaction was observed on very few occasions. Ear length and width increased in NB during the 11 months of observation, with no difference between ears with SET or OET. No variations in salivary cortisol concentration due to SET were observed in either NBs or ADs. A total of 11 animals were involved in SET-related accidents. Scars caused by SET migration were observed on the ears of all newborns after the 9th month of observation. In conclusion, the used SET does not seem to induce systemic or local inflammation more often compared to OET. However, despite promising technology, its usage in the present form cannot be recommended for cattle husbandry in Switzerland due to the high risk of accidental injury and migration in the ear cartilage.

Item Type: Thesis
Dissertation Type: Single
Date of Defense: 18 September 2023
Subjects: 600 Technology > 630 Agriculture
Institute / Center: 05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Clinical Research and Veterinary Public Health (DCR-VPH)
Depositing User: Hammer Igor
Date Deposited: 22 Apr 2024 16:17
Last Modified: 23 Apr 2024 02:19

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