This study designed a radio-frequency identification (RFID)-based Internet of Things (IoT) platform to create the core of a smart nest box. At the sensing level, we have deployed RFID-based sensors and egg detection sensors. A low-frequency RFID reader is installed in the bottom of the nest box and a foot ring RFID tag is worn on the leg of individual hens. The RFID-based sensors detect when a hen enters or exits the nest box. The egg-detection sensors are implemented with a resistance strain gauge pressure sensor, which weights the egg in the egg-collection tube. Thus, the smart nest box makes it possible to analyze the laying performance and behavior of individual hens. An evaluative experiment was performed using an enriched cage, a smart nest box, web camera, and monitoring console. The hens were allowed 14 days to become accustomed to the experimental environment before monitoring began. The proposed IoT platform makes it possible to analyze the egg yield of individual hens in real time, thereby enabling the replacement of hens with egg yield below a pre-defined level in order to meet the overall target egg yield rate. The results of this experiment demonstrate the efficacy of the proposed RFID-based smart nest box in monitoring the egg yield and laying behavior of individual hens.
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