So before I start this, please let me know if I am reiventing the wheel. If there are already reasonable solutions out there please stop me and let me know!

Our farms have cattle and sheep. I would like a drone similar to the LA100 series from Lehmann Aviation. Instead of checking out crops.

I would like the farmer to be able to open an easy to use app, click on the section of his farm he wants checked out and send it off.

The drone must be able to count livestock in camps ( a camp is a fenced off area. Farmers cycle their animals through camps to ensure that there is food and environment sustainability). 

I dont know if this would be easier/cheaper with IR or thermal imaging. I dont even know if you could put an IR reader that is sensitive enough on a drone so it doesnt have to fly too low so that it doesnt startle the animals or become a safety hazard.

Perhaps a thermal imagining drone would be better. If its possible to get accurate stock count of sheep and cattle from a camera. 

The bonus is the drone with a thermal camera can back up as a security drone to aid in anti-poaching activities at night. perhaps it can go up and use pattern recognition to try spot moving humans on your property. 


Which do you think would be better? thermal or IR? I will be using fixed wing (as farms here can be big)

Views: 4949

Replies to This Discussion

So before I start this, please let me know if I am reiventing the wheel. If there are already reasonable solutions out there please stop me and let me know!

---Each person may require different requirements so the "reinventing the wheel" may only pertain to certain parts of your idea.

Our farms have cattle and sheep. I would like a drone similar to the LA100 series from Lehmann Aviation. Instead of checking out crops.

---Not familiar with the LA100 but from the looks of it, it is similar to the Ritewing Zephyr style (which I do use).

I would like the farmer to be able to open an easy to use app, click on the section of his farm he wants checked out and send it off.

---Depending on the size of the farm, pastures and lots the farmer may want to inspect.

---I use the Zephyr for 200 acres, TechPOD for over 200 acres and starting to use the 3DR Solo as the "workhorse" for up -----to 200 acres(depending on the detail of the flight).

---So there could be many answers.

The drone must be able to count livestock in camps ( a camp is a fenced off area. Farmers cycle their animals through camps to ensure that there is food and environment sustainability). 

---As for counting this could be as simple as manual counts on a single picture(around a feeder or stock tank) taken from say a Canon S100.

---To the more advanced method of using ERDAS Imagine software and have it count the number of recognized animals in ---the picture.  This is difficult in some cases if your animals my not be one certain breed.  (Example: Not all Black Angus, ----different colors is my point)

I dont know if this would be easier/cheaper with IR or thermal imaging. I dont even know if you could put an IR reader that is sensitive enough on a drone so it doesnt have to fly too low so that it doesnt startle the animals or become a safety hazard.

---My opinion is it is easier with Thermal.

---Create missions in Mission Planner for each pasture, fly the mission while recording, land, upload video/images to computer and replay and do a manual count.

Perhaps a thermal imagining drone would be better. If its possible to get accurate stock count of sheep and cattle from a camera. 

---Works great, just depends on the scale.

The bonus is the drone with a thermal camera can back up as a security drone to aid in anti-poaching activities at night. perhaps it can go up and use pattern recognition to try spot moving humans on your property. 


Which do you think would be better? thermal or IR? I will be using fixed wing (as farms here can be big)

---Are you flying for the farmer or are they expected to fly it?  Some companies sell complete kits that say "no experience required" which is crazy.  I would hate to be the person behind the support number.

I've actually been working on a low cost Thermal Camera system that runs as a ROS Topic and uses OpenCV.  A thermal camera would definitely simplify the task of identifying animals in an open field.    I'm not aware of anything that exists that can do that, and I've been researching machine vision applications using thermal cameras for a few months now.   

This is the Thermal System we've developed.  It produces a 206x156 Thermal image and has a range of about 1000'.  The system uses an inexpensive onboard computer and the SEEK Thermal Sensor.  Another version of the sensor is available that offers a range of 1800' with a smaller field of view.  

This is a short video describing the camera in a little more detail, as well as some sample footage.  We should have some more sample footage shortly. 

Right now we're looking for people that might be interested in the beta version of this system while we continue developing it.  If you'd like to become a tester, let me know, and I can sell you a working system.  The software we're using is all Open Source. 

Here is an example of an OpenCV application that counts vehicles.  The application you're looking for isn't that far out of reach, but it would take some time and money to develop.   We're already developing another application, but maybe we can collaborate.  

I'm interested, how much if you already have a SEEK?  (NOT the XR model)

If you already have a Seek (which we did most of our testing on SEEK, not the XR) it would $220 for the Raspberry Pi version $280 for Odroid XU4.  The Pi version includes a battery, for the odroid you would need to use a 5V UBEC.   

We've made a few more improvements since that video.  The MJPEG stream (via Wifi) can be viewed using any web browser, and we're working on remote camera control right now to start and stop recording as well as change color palettes.  So far we've only done work on an Android app.

David, this technology has so much potential for the agricultural industry. But i think you can simplify it. 95 percent of beef farms require ear tags for simple cattle identification. RFID tags are the latest innovation in bovine production. I'm not a tech wiz but I do raise cattle. If it was simpler to just put a video tracking chip on a ear tag I would do that.(Even though thermal imaging would revolutionize deer hunting with game cameras. A good drone that is easy to use to the pilot would replace game cameras indefinitely.)

On another note Ive started incorproting my Yuneec Q500 in to our program the last few months. Mostly for the sole purpose of checking the cows water to avoid walking across the pasture in 20 degree weather. Poor video WIFI and short range from operating inside my truck has defeated the purpose of it and I joined this board to hopefully find some technology to fix the problem.

 But on another note, my Q500 has GPS and a watch me feature. Cows (especially heifers) dying while calving is a problem that has plagued cow calf programs since the begging of time. The technology of detecting the begging stage of calving has already been invented. A program that will detect a cow calving, send a notification to my phone with the position on that cow, activate my drone to fly out on its own to the same position, and send a live video feed to my phone of whats going on so i can tell whether she will need assistance or not. That technology sir, will revolutionize our industry. Like I said I'm not a tech expert but I'm a farmer who wants to make my life easier on me and my stock.

I would agree with Jake.

For the RFID checkout my company www.deeralerts.com  www.facebook.com/deeralerts  RFID Temperature monitoring system for farm raised deer.  The livestock version is being released soon.

I'm currently designing an RFID tag that, monitors the temperature, heart rate, oxygen level of the blood and GPS.

When a threshold is met you get a text or an email with time/date stamp, which animal and the specific data.

We have a 3DR Solo rigged up to fly over fields and pull the data from the tags. (This is just for fun, the main unit transmits over repeaters back to the base unit over long distances.)

Truly exciting times for the new generation of cowpuncher. Making this technology affordable and accessible to smaller producers that have less then 150 head is the tricky part. But we truly are heading to the era of the
" H.G. Well's Land and Cattle Co".

And Guy, Moocall is the latest in calving detection technology. I hope a system like yours can improve upon it in the future.

http://moocall.com

Hello David:

I´m sending this link from an Argentine company

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qq-LPgFkRnA

Company: www.amdrones.com

Dont know what type o technology they use, but I´ve seen it running and do the job.

Regards

Seems to me the simplest solution is a retro-reflector on the back of each animal. 3M retro-reflectors are a few cents. Close the iris until little light come in and then use a wide area LED flash and the shutter timing to capture and count the "dots".  

@David,

you can't fly any drone at night acccording to FAA.

2 dogs can do any home security job for you at pocket money.

Pattern recognition technology didn't mature to offer you quality count.

RFId chip works for 100%

You don't need thermal or IR camera to run a number of tests in day time.

Just install pattern recognition free app to your smartphone and go to check

quality of count.

You get poor quality or low-resolution images with IR or thermal camera

so you need to fly at low altitude or use telephoto lens.

A drone flying at low altitude can be easily heard and detected by your stock resulting in alert activities.

RFId chip is $1 a piece and can do quality job for you day and night.

FAA doesn't apply in his country. Not everyone flies in the USA.

@Guy,

you are right but please read ban on flying a drone at night as a smart advice by FAA to all of us.

Small drone if not supervised peroperly (FPV) can easily crash on landing.

Precision landing is still under development and GSM accuracy is about 10m.

There is no need to risk $1000 equipment to crash one night.

RFId chip works fine 24h.

NFC enabled club cards get scanned on entry to some casinos to make you famous to the staff.

Since personal number is assigned to individual cow system works perfectly,

generating speadsheet database on-the-fly (weight, heartbeat rate, health monitoring at

gateway)

BTW @Guy

RFID is passive chip vs.  GPS requiring energy supply and battery to get fix. 

RSS

Groups

Season Two of the Trust Time Trial (T3) Contest 
A list of all T3 contests is here. The current round, the Vertical Horizontal one, is here

© 2017   Created by Chris Anderson.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service