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

Citation:  Transactions of the ASAE. VOL. 40(6):1693-1698. (doi: 10.13031/2013.21414) @1997
Authors:   J. D. Harmon, H. Xin, J. Shao
Keywords:   Swine nursery, Early weaned piglets, Energetics, Indirect calorimetry, Heat production, Moisture production

The energetics of early weaned (13 to 16 days old) pigs were examined under four temperature regimes. The pigs, in groups of 10 (0.28 m2/pig), were housed in the indirect calorimeter chambers at initial air temperatures of 31.1, 28.9, 26.7, or 24.4°C which then were decreased by 1.1°C per week for the three weeks of the post-weaning period. The feed efficiency and average daily gain during the three-week trial for the four temperature regimes were 1.30, 360 g/day; 1.33, 380 g/day; 1.38, 370 g/day; and 1.27, 370 g/day, respectively. Overall feed efficiency was significantly lower (P < 0.05) for the coolest and warmest treatments. Average daily gain was not significantly different for any of the treatments (P > 0.05). The average moisture production for the four treatments was: 4.85, 4.26, 4.13, and 3.85 g H2O/kg-h, respectively. The total heat production and sensible heat loss were: 5.53, 2.21; 5.66, 2.71; 5.83, 3.01; and 5.87, 3.22 W/kg, respectively. Respiratory quotient averaged 0.95 to 0.96 for all regimes. All average energetic responses, except respiratory quotient, had significant differences among treatments (P < 0.05). Energetic responses of this study were substantially higher than data currently used by the ASAE Standard for swine nursery design.

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