This system automates and connects mobile poultry houses, making them energy self-sufficient.

Automating mobile hen houses to make them self-sufficient and able to manage them remotely using photovoltaic power: this seemed difficult to achieve and, above all, economically impossible. Élevage Service has risen to the challenge.

The concept is highly successful. ” All poultry production excluding mobile buildings can be automated and connected. So we worked to ensure that the sheds could be too,” recontextualises Laurent Audoin, Director of Élevage Service.

The stakes are high: there are around 5,000 huts in the South-West of France, the vast majority of which are managed manually by farmers. This is due to the technical constraints associated with the electrification of these huts, which have to be moved several times a year. “At the end of the season, the buildings move to a different site, as stipulated in the specifications. But farmers can’t always have electricity points everywhere”, continues Laurent Audoin.

A do-it-yourself kit product

Élevage Service took this issue into account and came up with the solution: a DIY kit that automates the hutches and connects them to the sun’s electricity.

The automation allows the poultry exit hatches to be opened and closed according to a set schedule. Similarly, the cabin’s climate can be regulated by opening and closing the side flaps, using pre-recorded temperature settings. This is made possible by low-voltage (24V) electric motors.

At the same time, Élevage Service has developed an LED lighting system in kit form, programmable and variable in light intensity, always powered by low voltage.

Finally, connectivity will enable farmers to monitor their indicators (temperature, lighting, etc.) remotely on their smartphone. This will enable them to take action and modify the desired settings according to weather conditions, for example.

Cabanes connectées Elevage Service
Model on display at Élevage Service
Cabanes connectées Elevage Service

Investing for greater efficiency

“It’s a real technical and economic advantage. Ultimately, this investment will be profitable and improve farmers’ incomes,” says David Dumon, Sales Manager at Élevage Service. “Automation will improve the environment in the building, enhancing animal welfare and, as a result, the well-being of the farmer by reducing the drudgery and time spent on the job, as well as the mental burden,” he adds. To achieve this, a test phase on a group of huts is currently underway.

At the beginning of April, the chicks that had just arrived on Mathieu Labarthe’s farm in Bégaar (Landes) took up residence in brand new buildings. These new huts represent the promise of a new way of working for the farmer. “My buildings are over 40 years old, so it was time to invest. The opportunity to test connected huts presented itself and I took the plunge“, says the young farmer.

Cabanes connectées chez Mathieu Labarthe
Cabanes connectées chez Mathieu Labarthe 2
Connected poultry houses at Mathieu Labarthe's farm
Mathieu Labarthe
Une photo de Mathieu Labarthe

“The challenge now is to find out whether the improved performance will enable me to make a rapid return on my investment.”

Mathieu will be taking stock in a year’s time, to see whether the gains in terms of comfort, technical performance and profitability have been achieved.


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