Researchers in North Wales have created a flock of iSheep - sheep connected to the internet - in the latest twist on the internet of things.

Using a small tracker, the idea is to enable a farmer to keep track of the flock, and stop rogue sheep wandering off. Apparently, some sheep are wont to do that. A farmer will then be able to keep track of the flock with a quick glance at an iPad or other connected device.

It also means that a farmer will be able to locate missing sheep in such instances as foul weather.

BBC

The BBC reports that one of the benefits of creating iSheep is to gain a better understanding of what sheep get up to when the farmer's back is turned.

"The one thing we do know about sheep is that they tend to congregate and camp in areas at night … be that at drinking troughs or feeding troughs, or even [at] these camps by the river or whatever, [and] they tend to urinate there," said Professor Dave Chadwick, Environment Centre Wales.

But this isn't about tracking down on miscreant behaviour, however, it's really to understand the environmental impact of such behaviour, such as where all the waste is being deposited and what the wider pollution implications might be.

Gareth Jones, the farmer, sounding slightly skeptical of the need for the new technology said: "I've been brought up that every morning, we look at the sheep. There's nothing like looking at a sheep."

We're just left wondering how many baas of reception they get.

Image credit: (cc) Mike Haller