Ambassador: David Goodier, United Kingdom
Publication date: October 2018 | Theme: Precision production
Challenges: Increase gilt and sow performance
Farrow-to-finish producer David Goodier is measuring and managing gilt body condition more accurately. This is to help retain more young sows in the herd and improve sow lifetime productivity, while reducing the replacement rate of gilts and associated costs. Better understanding of changes in body condition was needed to avoid animals being over-fit at farrowing and under-conditioned at weaning, for example.
Weigh scales and a back fat tester are used to weigh gilts and measure their back fat at position 2 at service and on exit from the farrowing house at weaning. They are also measuring back fat as gilts enter the farrowing house and after 18 days of lactation. The feeding system has been recalibrated to help ensure gilts are fed the correct amount at the right stage and monitoring is ongoing.
Further information will be available on this page in the near future. In the meantime, to access more details, contact RPIG (United Kingdom): Ben Williams