The Body Condition Score (BCS) is considered a critical value for dairy farms, since its observation can be used to optimize milk production. Usually, the BCS is calculated by human experts after visual inspection in a time-consuming and subjective process. There are already some papers where this process is almost automated using image processing on some kinds of pictures and, in this work, the first steps towards a fully automated method based on pictures taken with common photographic cameras are described. Active Shape Models (ASM) are used to obtain a set of features that describe the back shape of cows and those features feed a classifier that computes the BCS. We show that the BCS can be estimated using only a set of angles from the back view with an error similar to that calculated between scores of two experts. To obtain those angles automatically is the hardest step in this process, but we have already achieved reasonable results on that point too.
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