A survey published today by RSPCA Freedom Food has revealed that 77% of British farmers either play music, radio, sing or chat to their animals – and the majority claim it makes their animals more relaxed, calm and content.

A survey published today by RSPCA Freedom Food has revealed that 77% of British farmers either play music, radio, sing or chat to their animals – and the majority claim it makes their animals more relaxed, calm and content.

Farm favourite, Adele. Photo credit: Christopher MacsurakResults of the survey, published today to mark the start of Farm Animal Week (June 18-24), revealed that nearly half (44%) of farmers play music or the radio to their animals, with Radio 2 being the most popular station (played by 23%) followed by Radio 1 (14%).

Popular farmyard artists include Adele (pictured), Bon Jovi, Coldplay, Eminem, Aerosmith and grunge band Nirvana (whose drummer Dave Grohl, ironically, went on to record a song titled “For All The Cows”, which appeared on the Foo Fighters’ eponymous debut album).

But it’s not just music ringing out in our farmyards. The majority of all farmers (63%) – and an impressive 75% of dairy farmers – surveyed said they talk to their animals, while 28% admit to playing talk radio to their livestock.

The survey follows research by Essex-based Writtle College, which found that playing a radio tuned into a pop music or chat station can have a positive effect on sow and piglet behaviour, by increasing sow suckling and causing piglets to be more playful.

For All The Cows, the third single taken from the Foo Fighters' epoymous debut album.With this in mind, the RSPCA is now looking at ways of how we can better “listen” to what animals have to say, as part of a pioneering new welfare initiative to help further improve farm animals’ lives.   

RSPCA farm animal scientist Marc Cooper said: “This is about going back to basics and doing what good stock-keepers do best – looking at and listening to their animals to measure how well and happy they are.  

Many farmers already do this and those on the RSPCA’s Freedom Food scheme work to a strict set of welfare standards. But we are using science to develop a unique, quick and simple set of measures to assess animal welfare. It’s a bit like a ‘welfare tool kit’ and the results will help farmers see how well their animals are, better understand what they need, and identify what more they can do to help give them a really good life.”   

Freedom Food assessors are already using these new measures on egg laying farms and will start using them on dairy farms in July 2012.

 

Adele image courtesy Christopher Macsurak
View your activity >

Leave a Reply

Be the First to Comment!

Notify of
avatar

wpDiscuz