Measurement of enteric methane from ruminants using a hand-held Laser Methane Detector

Mizeck Chagunda, Dave Ross, John Rooke, T Yan, Jamie-Leigh Douglas, Lucie Poret, Neil McEwan, P Teeranavattanakul , Dave Roberts

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30 Citations (SciVal)


This study investigated the effectiveness of the proprietary laser methane detector (LMD) in enteric methane monitoring from individual dairy cows and sheep. Three experiments were carried out. First, the relationship between LMD and indirect open-circuit respiration calorimetric chamber measurements was tested. Sensitivity and specificity for cows were 95.4% and 96.5%. For sheep, sensitivity was 93.8% and specificity was 78.7%. Second, the effect of cow's activity on enteric methane emissions was investigated. During drinking and feeding, cows produced significantly more (p<0.001) methane emissions than when idle. Third, effect of different micrometeorological factors on LMD measurements under outdoor grazing conditions was investigated. Wind speed, relative humidity, pressure and wind direction relative to methane point-source had significant effect on methane measurements (p<0.001) under outdoor conditions. With further validation, the LMD has potential to provide reliable estimates from ruminants and hence provide a useful technique for on-farm monitoring and decision support for greenhouse gas mitigation strategies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-75
JournalActa Agriculturæ Scandinavica, Section A - Animal Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • laser methane detector
  • ruminants
  • enteric methane


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