Effect of environmental enrichment by providing trees as rubbing objects in grassland: Grazing cattle need tree-grooming

We examined the role of trees as grooming objects in grazing pasture and investigated their necessity. Four grazing Japanese Black cows were used. Experimental pastures with restricted (RST) and released (RLS) grooming with trees were established. Examination was carried out for 24 h in each RST and RLS. The respective frequencies and duration of self-grooming, […]

Effects of group composition on the grazing behaviour of herbivores

Animal behaviour is often a function of the animal’s physiological state. Groups of animals will often contain individuals with a range of physiological states and the grazing behaviour of herbivores is affected by their physiological state. This study compared the grazing decisions of animals in groups of single and mixed physiological states. Using a grazing […]

Eliminative behaviour of dairy cows at pasture

Despite a strong avoidance of grazing near dung patches, cattle have traditionally been considered not to avoid bodily contact with faeces, regardless of any risk of disease. Little is understood of the behaviour of pasture-kept dairy cows at the time of defaecation and therefore, the eliminative behaviour of 40 Holstein-Friesian cows was observed at pasture […]

Training methods for introducing cows to a pasture-based automatic milking system

Training cows to use an automatic milking system (AMS) is an important process as this method of milking depends on cows voluntarily using the AMS. This study examined two levels of training before calving on the behaviour of cows and heifers in an extensive pasture-based AMS. Animals received either no training (NIL), training which included […]

Safeguarding the welfare of livestock grazing on nature conservation sites

Nature conservationists frequently use domestic livestock to graze unimproved semi-natural vegetation in order to achieve the ecological objectives that they are seeking for the sites that they manage. This paper reviews the role of the Grazing Animals Project in raising awareness of the factors that affect the health, safety and general welfare of the animals […]

Preference of domestic rabbits for grass or coarse mix feeds

The motivation of juvenile rabbits to graze was tested by offering a choice of coarse mix or grass as rewards to rabbits fed a nutritionally adequate diet of carrots and hay. Before measuring the motivation of the 16 rabbits, eight were offered access to grass for 16 days and the remaining eight were kept in […]

Individual Personality and the Spatial Distribution of Groups of Grazing Animals: An Example with Sheep

Impacts of individual personality on group distribution were investigated using sheep (Ovis aries) as a model. In an indoor exploration test, individuals who visited

Using a three-axis accelerometer to identify and classify sheep behaviour at pasture

Identifying and classifying feeding behaviour in free-ranging ruminants will help improve efficiency of animal production. Another potential benefit would be in understanding the role behaviour has in determining heritability of methane measurement. The aim of this study was to determine the accuracy, sensitivity, specificity and precision with which tri-axial accelerometers can identify sheep behaviour at […]