An RFID-based Smart Cage for Animal Behavior Analysis

Luca Mainetti, Luigi Patrono, Andrea Secco, Ilaria Sergi, Stefano Pieretti
An innovative tracking system based on passive Radio Frequency Identification technology in Ultra High Frequency band, able to perform behavior analysis of small laboratory animals, is presented in this work. The proposed smart system consists of both hardware and software components and it is able to extract main behavioral parameters exploiting raw animals tracking data captured by a Radio Frequency Identification reader system. The proposed solution allows overcoming some limits of typical
more » ... limits of typical analysis methods commonly used in research laboratories for the same purposes, such as systems based on video technology and human observations, while providing the same information content. It is cheaper and guarantees better performance even in case of strong similarity among animals and in poor lighting conditions. Different tests were carried out in order to demonstrate the feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed system using laboratory mice. The software component is able to provide, via Web, a user-friendly tool containing main animal behavioral information such as statistical analysis and graphs regarding animal displacements, indication about the locomotor activity and detection of specific conditions including isolation and aggregation phenomena.