The behavioural arena for cattle is a building complex with a direct connection to the Experimental Facility for Cattle (EAR) in which a variety of studies on the behaviour of cattle can be carried out. A 10 × 10 m enclosure has been installed in the arena, which can be used for standardised behaviour tests as an open field with a maximum field size of 100 m². Theoretically, up to 10 cows can be housed in the arena at the same time. This area can also be divided into up to 4 sub-areas of 25 m² each, which are equipped with water troughs and separate gates for individual access. This allows for longer investigation periods with several animals in the arena at the same time.
Presently, partner of the EU-Projekt „SmartCow: an integrated infrastructure for increased research capability and innovation in the European cattle sector (2018-2021)"
For specific experimental designs, further adaptation/reconstruction of this basic structure of the housing compartment is possible.
The enclosure area can be monitored by up to eight different cameras, depending on the experimental approach. Microphone connections are located directly under the ceiling, in the middle of the arena. For bioacoustic research approaches, the entire enclosure is acoustically shielded from the environment. In addition, a noiseless ventilation system is installed.
A control room is connected to the enclosure area. This is where the controlling computers for the various video and sound recording systems are located, which are all integrated into the FBN network and can also be controlled from other workstations in the local network.