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

Citation:  Proceedings of the Seventh International Symposium, 18-20 May 2005 (Beijing, China) Publication Date 18 May 2005  701P0205.(doi:10.13031/2013.18399)
Authors:   Y.Z. Li, L. Chenard, S.P. Lemay, and H.W. Gonyou
Keywords:   Water intake, water wastage, pigs, nipple drinkers

Three experiments were conducted to assess water intake, water wastage, and a means to reduce water wastage by growing-finishing pigs from nipple drinkers. In the first experiment, water disappearance, intake and wastage were determined at recommended nipple heights and flow rates. The second experiment was to determine the effects of nipple height and flow rate on water wastage. In the third experiment, water disappearance and manure output under commercial conditions were assessed for 12 wks at 4 drinker treatments (bowl, recommended nipple height, low nipple = 480 mm, and high nipple with steps underneath = 730 mm). The pigs consumed more water as they grew (4.0 L/d at 53 kg vs. 5.4 L/d at 72 kg, P < 0.01); however, the water wastage was 26% of water disappearance, regardless pig weights. At the lower nipple (330 mm) with higher flow rate (1000 mL/min), water wastage was increased from 22% to 38% (P < 0.01) in growers, and from 15% to 42% (P < 0.01) in finishers. Under commercial conditions, the pigs at the high nipples with steps underneath had similar water disappearance and manure output to those from the pigs at the recommended nipples and bowls, but 15% and 12% lower than the pigs at the low nipple drinkers, respectively. The results indicated that the high water wastage from nipple drinkers mainly resulted from improper height and flow rate, and could be reduced to the same level as from bowl drinkers by good management.

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