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1 March 2012 Animal-related factors associated with piglet mortality in a bedded, group-farrowing system
Y. Z. Li, J. E. Anderson, L. J. Johnston
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Abstract

Li, Y. Z., Anderson, J. E. and Johnston, L. J. 2012. Animal-related factors associated with piglet mortality in a bedded, group-farrowing system. Can. J. Anim. Sci. 92: 11-20. To understand pre-weaning mortality of piglets in a bedded, group-farrowing system, associations with sow parity, mortality of piglets during the first 24 h after birth, farrowing behavior, cross-fostering, birth weight and gender of piglets were investigated. Sows (n=169, parity 1 to 10) from eight contemporary groups were evaluated. Litter size at birth, dead piglets from birth to weaning, and individual weight of piglets at birth and weaning (27±2.6 d) were recorded. Behavior of 46 focal sows during farrowing was video-recorded. Piglet mortality within litter increased (P<0.001) with increasing parity. Piglets that died before weaning were lighter (P<0.001) at birth than weaned piglets. Mortality of pigs during the first 24 h postpartum was correlated positively with pre-weaning mortality within litter (R2=0.34; P<0.001). Farrowing behaviors were not associated with piglet mortality, and were not different among sows of different parities, or between sows with and without 24 h piglet mortality. Gender of piglets and cross-fostering did not affect piglet mortality. Results indicate that parity, 24 h mortality, and birth weight of piglets were the major animal-related factors associated with piglet mortality in the loose farrowing system studied.

Y. Z. Li, J. E. Anderson, and L. J. Johnston "Animal-related factors associated with piglet mortality in a bedded, group-farrowing system," Canadian Journal of Animal Science 92(1), 11-20, (1 March 2012). https://doi.org/10.1139/CJAS2011-068
Received: 21 June 2011; Accepted: 1 October 2011; Published: 1 March 2012
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