Leonie Jacobs has been named assistant professor of animal and poultry sciences in the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

She is one of a number of new faculty members recently hired in the college this academic year. New positions were identified to bring talent to the college's focus areas, including food, health, the environment, and community viability. The new faculty members are distributed across teaching, research, and Extension.

Jacobs' research focuses on the welfare of poultry. Her interests include applied measures to improve welfare, pre-slaughter issues, on-farm welfare assessments, effective worker training, and humane slaughter. Her appointment at Virginia Tech includes research and extension work.

Her Ph.D. research aimed at identifying broiler chicken welfare problems during transportation. Besides pinpointing problem areas, she developed a pre-slaughter welfare monitoring protocol with an integrated welfare-score calculation. Other poultry work includes a project on humane on-farm killing of individual birds and an M.S. thesis on the impact of Northern Fowl mites on night-time behavior of laying hens.

Jacobs received her bachelor's degree in animal management from Van Hall Larenstein, her master's degrees in animal sciences from the Swedish Agricultural University and Wageningen University, and her doctorate in veterinary science from Ghent University.

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