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Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:   No Citation available.
Authors:   Terry L. Steinhart
Keywords:   Farrowing, Crate, Pig, Free-stall pen, Litter, Born, and Alive

This demonstration project studied the differences in farrowing crate designs and the survival of piglets. Three basic crate designs were studied: Farrowing crates with hydraulic-side-rails, crates with solid-rod-finger side rails, and free-stall pens. Crates with hydraulic-sides in this study had more pigs born alive, had fewer pigs born dead, weaned more pigs, and had higher weaned litter weights than any other crate studied. When the number of pigs started was compared to percent weaned the solid-rod-finger crates weaned the highest percentage with hydraulic-side-rails second and free-stall pens third. The free-stall pen had the least number of pigs born alive, weaned least pigs, and had the lightest litter weaned weights. Free-stall pens fell in the middle of hydraulic-side-rail crates and solid-rod-finger crates for pigs born dead. The solid-rod-finger crates fell in the middle of hydraulic-side-rail crates and free-stall pens for pigs born alive and weaned litter weight. Solid-rod-finger crates weaned slightly more pigs than free-stall pens. Solid-rod-finger crates had the most number of pigs born dead. Flooring layout was not replicated for all crate designs. Although flooring may have had an influence on the results, it was not measurable in this study. (Download PDF)    (Export to EndNotes)