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27 November 2019 12:35

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Russian Cows Wear VR Headsets to Improve Milk Production

Get the biggest daily news stories by email Subscribe Thank you for subscribing We have more newsletters Show me See our privacy notice Could not subscribe, try again later Invalid Email In the hopes of boosting their cows ' milk production, farmers in Russia have turned to technology, in the form of virtual reality headsets. The RusMoloko farm, just outside Moscow, has started using VR headsets on its cows, in what's believed to be a world-first. Announcing the programme, the Moscow agriculture ministry said: "Virtual reality architects created a unique summer field simulation programme based on numerous studies showing that cows are better at perceiving shades of red than green and blue tones on the colour spectrum." The headsets show the cows a red-focused colour scheme, mimicking conditions in summer, which are more enjoyable for the cows. Initial results have shown positive results, according to the Moscow agriculture ministry. It added: "During the first test, experts recorded a decrease in anxiety and an increase in the overall emotional mood of the herd.

"The impact of VR glasses on milk production will be demonstrated by further comprehensive study." YouTuber Jonny Tickle posted a photo of the strange technology on Twitter, and his tweet has garnered a lot of attention. (Image: Twitter/Jonny Tickle) One user replied: "Why not just treat them nicely, give them more space, surroundings & stop forcing them to produce. I mean, just sayin." Another added: "I don't watch Black Mirror, but from what I hear this would be an episode." And one user joked: "Did someone already make the joke about cows watching moo-vies? Watching a VR pasture may improve cows' mood and encourage milk production (via Ministry of Agriculture and Food of the Moscow Region) Russian farmers are testing new prototype VR glasses—on their cows. Dairy producers in Moscow hope scenes of peaceful pastures will keep the cattle calm in an effort to generate more milk.

"The combination of many years of experience and technology is the key to sustainable development of the industry," according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Food of the Moscow Region. Russia, which has long been dependent on imported milk, aims to be self-sufficient in dairy by 2020, Dairy Global reported in April. To meet such a lofty goal, the country has resorted to some, well, unusual tactics. "In addition to physical needs, researchers began to pay more attention to the emotional state of animals," a Ministry press release said. "Examples of dairy farms from different countries show that in a calm atmosphere, the quantity, and sometimes the quality, of milk increases markedly." American farmers, for instance, install automatically rotating brushes in stalls to massage cattle.

In Europe, robotic systems ensure maximum free movement of livestock. And Russian manufacturers broadcast classical music. Employees of the RusMoloko farm in Russia's Ramensky District, however, are taking things a step further with VR glasses. Developers adapted a virtual reality headset, intended for a human, to fit the head of a cow. Dairy cattle were then shown a "unique summer field simulation program." (I'm picturing a wide open field of green under a cloudless blue sky, with endless piles of wheat straw, alfalfa, and barley sprouts scattered around the pasture.) During initial testing, experts recorded a decrease in anxiety and an increase in the overall emotional mood of the herd.

"Technology improvements should affect the industry as a whole," the Ministry said. "The impact of VR glasses on the milk production of cows will be shown by a further comprehensive study." If cows can have their own dating app, then surely they can enjoy a virtual frolic once in a while. More on Geek.com: A Russian dairy farm might have found the secret to a cow's happiness, and it is way more tech-oriented than you would have ever expected. With an aim towards keeping their bovine friends happier, a Russian dairy farm strapped virtual reality headsets to its cows in an experiment. It attempted to improve their well being and increase milk production, reported Daily Mail.

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The research was based on Dutch and Scottish findings that environmental conditions have a significant effect on a cow's health and subsequently milk production; the report cited the Ministry of Agriculture as revealing. According to the report, farmers from the Krasnogorsk farm near Moscow worked with vets, developers and consultants to attach virtual reality headsets onto cows and show them simulations of a summer field. The Ministry of Agriculture and Food in Moscow has said that the study reported a reduction in anxiety among the cows along with improved emotional mood in the herd, the report revealed. The study will also observe whether the improved mood of the herd has any positive effect on milk production as well. The report says that the hardware was developed by taking a human VR headset and then molding it according to the specifications of the animal's head. Researchers than tweaked the colour palette in the software so that it catered to the cow's vision, who can only perceive dull shades as well as yellow and blue. Cows cannot perceive red or green, the report revealed. Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox - subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what's happening in the world around you – in real time. Apparently, cows that spend time in virtual reality produce better quality milk. This is according to a Russian study reported by The Moscow Times, which tested specially-designed VR headsets on a heard of cows. The study claims that cows wearing VR headsets ultimately live happier lives and therefore, may, help the animals produced better milk. "During the first test, experts recorded a decrease in anxiety and an increase in the overall emotional mood of the herd," the study noted. The special VR headsets were created based on "numerous studies of cattle's vision" and reportedly feature a "summer field simulation program" to improve the cows living conditions. According to the report, a second test will verify if the VR cow milk is, in fact, better than regular cow milk. Feature image: [Image Source: Ministry of Agriculture and Food of the Moscow Region When geeking out over Virtual Reality, agriculture is rarely the first thing that comes to mind. One Russian farmer is not as narrow-sighted as I am and has found an innovative way to use VR to enhance their craft. RusLoko Dairy Farm in Russia is making cows wear VR headsets to enhance milk production. The custom made headsets improve the cow's condition by beaming relaxing pictures of "sun-filled summer views of green pastures". Research done prior to the production of the VR headset for cows proved that points to higher and better quality milk production in cows that had a calmer atmosphere and thus the headsets are meant to mimic those optimum conditions and maximize yield from the cows. advertisement As aforementioned, the headsets aren't regular off-the-shelf VR headsets but actually custom-made headsets for cows: The team ensured to create VR views that work with a cow's vision, for instance, their higher perception of the color red but weaker tones of blue and green were taken into account. The virtual reality architects also designed a unique program for simulating green summer fields. Interesting Engineering The cows are said to have shown a decrease in anxiety and an increase in the "general mood" of the test herd. The study is yet to prove if the cows are producing more milk but regardless of how this ends it sure will make for interesting discussions. PS: Does this mean that the cows wearing these headsets are living in the Matrix? Quick NetOne, Telecel, Africom, And Econet Airtime Recharge Number to recharge: Airtime amount: Eco Cash number: {{error_message}} {{error_message}} {{notice}} If anything goes wrong, click here to enter your query. WhatsApp Share 2 Shares