Products View all
Success Stories View all

GPS Tracking Devices Used To Study Sheepdog Behavior

Scientists Use GPS Tracking Devices To Study Sheepdog Behavior

A team of researchers in the United Kingdom used GPS tracking devices to study the movements and behaviors of working sheepdogs and their flock of sheep. The BBC reports that the sheepdogs do not just chase after the flock.

The relationship between a sheepdog and their flock of sheep has always seemed magical but now, thanks to GPS tracking devices, it can be explained. The GPS data revealed there are actually mathematical secrets of how one sheepdog can herd over 100 unruly sheep.

The GPS tracking devices uncovered two rules for the sheepdog and their flock of sheep. Rule one: The sheepdog first learns how to make the sheep flock together. Rule two: Once the sheep are flocked in a tight group, the dog pushes the group to where they want.

The sheepdog sees the sheep as fluffy white things. If they see gaps or notice the gaps getting bigger, the dog knows to bring them together. Dr. Andrew King, the study co-author, was shocked to discover how simple the rules are for the relationship.

Dr. King worked to design specialized backpacks with GPS tracking devices for the sheep and the sheepdog. The backpacks were then attached to the animals. The researchers had many different ideas when they first started. After looking at the relationship from a birds-eye-view, the researchers determined they needed to study it from the sheepdogs’ point-of-view.

The GPS data was used to develop computer simulations and the shepherding model. The mathematical algorithm, revealed by the GPS tracking devices, solves what is known as the “the shepherding problem”. The shepherding problem is how one agent is able to control a large amount of reluctant agents. The data could be used to develop “shepherd robots” that can be used for crowd control or oil spill clean-up.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)

You May Also Like…

What is an Asset Tracking System?

Asset tracking is more than having a list of inventory or remembering where to place things in a facility. It requires a complete overview of an organization’s valuable property, along with the ability to monitor and manage it effectively.

5 Ways Fleet Management Can Improve Businesses

Fleet management incorporates the budgeting, safety, acquisition and maintenance of a group of vehicles. Fleet management helps the operator oversee all the activities of its vehicles to ensure that drivers are safe and following compliance regulations, while completing work on time.

A fleet management system can help managers increase visibility into their operations while automating and streamlining work processes to ensure safety, compliance and efficiency.

5 Ways That Telematics Boosts Fleet Safety

5 Ways That Telematics Boosts Fleet Safety

From long hours and isolation to fatigue and poor judgment, there are so many factors at play when it comes to fleet safety; with the industry becoming more competitive, these dangers are likely to increase.
Investing in telematics technology can enable fleet managers to monitor driving behaviour, locate vehicles in real-time and help prevent problems before they start.