My family owns a 25 acre land area, with a house, a barn, and many animals. Our goal when we moved here was to be free and explore to new depths with the advantage of land. We had some ideas for some house renovation and some barn renovation, but before we even thought about that, we had to get some animals. We quickly found a goat breeder near our location, and went to their farm to check it out. We fell in love with those cute baby goats, and we bought 4 goats! The previous owners had custom built and converted a barn stall into a chicken coup, so of course, we had to get some chickens! Just like that we had barn animals and fresh eggs which is always a delight.
Let me give you a briefing on what I do to take care of the animals. First, I go to the barn and release the chickens from their coups, then let the younger goats out, and then let the older goats out. If any of the stalls water supply is low or dirty, then I will clean and refill the bucket so it is all clean water. Then I am done with the morning schedule. The evening however is a little bit different. Let me give you an overview of the feed for each animal. The goats and sheep eat cracked corn (the corn grown for livestock all broken into pieces), the chicken eat scratch grains (which are bird seeds with some cracked corn and some other nutrients added), and finally the cats eat their cat food (their dry kibble). So now I will brief you on the evening schedule. I go to the barn and grab the scoop for serving grain, and take one scoop and give it to the younger goats, and one scoop for the older goats too. Then I take 3 scoops and put them into a bigger bucket so I can easily carry it out to the sheep. Then I take one and a half scoop of scratch grain and serve it to the chickens. Right before I leave the barn, I serve the cats 1 cup of kibble each (we have 2 cats) and then shut all the doors, lock up the barn and head out to the sheep about 50 steps away from the barn. I serve the 4 sheep their cracked corn and then I am finished and can go home.
I am big on using AI and technology in my life and I love integrating technology into everyday life and tasks we perform. When a goat was in its late stage of pregnancy, we would be uncertain when the mother would deliver, or what the temperature was in the barn so we could make sure the baby was warm enough. In fact something motivated me even more to monitor the barn; when the goat had its babies, it had twins, and those twins were born in 20 degree weathers, ao this was of course bad for the babies as they should not be in that much cold. The next morning, when my dad went to check on them, one of the 2 babies was dead. Unfortunately the temperature was unknown to us and we didn’t have a clue how they were doing, and that cost us a baby goat’s life. I don’t want that to happen ever again.
I want to have a way to silently communicate with the animals and have an eye on the whole barn at all times. I want to keep those animals as safe as possible, so here is my plan; I want to digitize the barn by adding a multi thermostat and humidity detector, various night vision cameras around the barn (preferably in every stall) and then add detectors in the food bins to let us know if the food level in the bins is getting low. I would also like to add a self watering system, so that whenever the water is low in a bucket, a small tap in each stall could fill up the bucket with fresh clean well water. The main goal of this project is to take most of the small jobs and simple tasks out of the way using AI and technology.