The DEM and MX2 derive activity using the same method; however, Ponemah v5.x and v6.x differ in available Derived Parameter options. Please remember, Activity is a relative measurement used to answer the question: “Is the animal moving (active) or not (inactive)?”
When using PhysioTel and PhysioTel HD implants, Activity counts are not directly generated by the implant, but instead are generated by the Data Exchange Matrix (DEM) or the Matrix 2.0 (MX2). As the Subject moves about in its cage, the telemetry signal transmitted to the receiver antennas varies in strength. The signal strength may vary due to orientation of the animal relative to the receiver, or due to the distance of the animal from the receiver antennas. When the signal strength changes by a certain amount, the DEM/MX2 generates an Activity count. The number of counts generated is dependent on both distance and speed of movement.
The actual number generated depends on the following factors:
- Transmitter model.
- Speed with which the transmitter moves.
- Any outside interference such as a nearby transmitter or power source.
- Slight variation from receiver to receiver.
Therefore, comparing the Activity count output of implants against each other only makes sense relatively – is the animal moving or not. Since the Activity waveform is in counts, the accumulated counts over the logging period, normalized to a minute, is of most value to obtain. The following outline the recommended Derived Parameter to select for the Activity waveform given the Ponemah version being used.
- Ponemah v5.x with DEM and/or MX2
- Total Activity (A_TA) reports the integral of the Activity signal over a 1 second duration. The A_TA reported to the spreadsheet will equal the Average of the 1 second activity counts included within the Logging Rate. This results in values with units of counts/sec.
This may be normalized to counts/minute, as in v6.x (described below), by changing the PPP3.ini file setting. Details for doing this can be found in this article How to normalize to Ponemah Activity Parameter to Counts/min.
Note: Changing this to 60 seconds to get counts per minute, will result in an ‘x’ being logged to the spreadsheet, should the logging rate not be a minute. Meaning, for a 10 second logging rate, entries 10 – 50 seconds will have an ‘x’ and 60 seconds will have the value.
- v6.20 and later
- Total Activity (ATA) reports the integral of the Activity signal over a 60 second duration. When sampling the Activity channel using the default sampling rate of 1Hz the A_TA will equal the sum of the Activity values over the 60 seconds. This results in values with units of counts/minute.
- Total Activity 2 (ATA2) reports the integral of the Activity signal over the defined Logging Rate, normalized to a minute. When sampling the Activity channel using the default sampling rate of 1Hz the A_TA2 will equal the sum of the Activity values over the Logging Rate. This results in values with units of counts/minute.
Note: Since Ponemah reports derived data based on the Logging Rate, Total Activity 2 is the recommended parameter for use with Activity for Ponemah v6.20 and later.
Ponemah v6.00-v6.12 reported Activity differently, as the default sampling rate was 10 Hz and the default Activity Reset value was 1. These defaults would also cause inconsistencies with accumulating the activity counts when using Scheduled Sampling. Ponemah v6.20 corrected the default sampling rate (1 Hz) and Activity Reset (60) values, as well as added ATA2 parameter for more accurate, consistent reporting. If you collected Activity data using Ponemah v6.00-v6.12, please see the following article for details on how to normalize the values to the expected Counts/min: