The Tech of Animal Sorting

By Deane Barker on March 4, 2005

Boing Boing linked today to this scary chicken harvester. It’s very cool, but I’m sure it’s terrifying to the animals. I’m not a big animal rights guy, but I do know there will be a few chickens with nightmares after having been through that.

Since we’re on the subject, I’ll link to a similar, but more tame type of thing for pigs. The Farmweld Fast II pig sorter is like an amusement park ride for swine.

The pigs evidently just mill around in a holding pen until they enter a booth and the door closes behind them (I couldn’t figure out if there was an incentive to either enter the booth or leave the pen). The booth weighs the pig, then opens the door on other end and maniupulates gates at the end of a chute so the pig enters a specific pen based on its size.

The point is, I imagine, that you could stick all your pigs into one pen, and come back an hour later to have them in 10 different pens based on how much they weighed. Pretty efficient, and this video makes it look like more fun for the pigs that the other thing is for the chickens.



  1. The video of the chicken sorter was great, but my kids were disappointed there was no sound track on it. It needed a deep voice with a thick Scottish brogue in the background saying, “No chicken escapes from Tweedy’s farm!”

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