Benefits of chicken farm automation

On the grounds of the chicken farm, there is room for up to 2,600 hens and many uses for automation. As a family business, the concerns are placed on the welfare of its animals. The Miniserver controls temperature and more to create added value of the business.

Project details

Location: Bavaria, Germany

About the farm:

Occupies up to 2,600 chickens

Produces 600,000+ eggs per year

Loxone Components:

Miniserver : the “brain” of all automated tasks

AO Extension : switches on/off the ventilation system

Relay Extension : controls the discharge flaps

Dimmer Extension : controls lighting

Weather Station : monitors and communicates weather data

Importance of controlling climate

The “thermoneutral zone” is the temperature range in which the maximum biological performance is achieved with the lowest feed consumption. This optimum temperature range must be maintained as reliably as possible.

The exact temperature depends mainly on the relative humidity. The drier the stable air, the higher the temperature in the stable should be. Or the other way round: the more humid the stable air, the cooler the stable should be.

Relative humidity has an influence on many other important aspects such as manure drying, bedding quality and the ammonia and dust content in the stable air. So you can see why you can really benefit from using sensors that measure humidity and temperature.

When using sensors, these two measured values are are communicated to analog inputs of the Miniserver. The AO Extension takes this information and controls ventilation system accordingly – relative humidity and temperature. Heating the aviary is not necessary, as the chickens produce their own body heat fine.

Controlled field time

By intelligent Loxone controls, this custom application makes it possible for the hens to leave the two aviaries and spend time in an outdoor enclosure. The Relay Extension enables time-dependent control of the total of six discharge flaps. Once it’s time to go back into the barn, it also controls a net construction to guide the hens back inside.

Our Tip: Motion Sensors play a role in security, keeping animals safe inside.

“With Loxone, we could realize all important functions with only one system. Although there are specially developed systems intended for the purpose of keeping hens, these are usually only suitable when much larger scale.

Thanks to Loxone, we are also able to adapt the range of functions individually to the customer’s wishes and to expand it easily as required”.

Gerhard Oeckl

Managing Director, Märzluft Oeckl GmbH

Credit: Loxone International

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