Steve Pohl South Dakota State University

Resources Reviewed

PIG How-To's

Daily Walking Swine Nursery-Growing-Finishing Barns

Publish Date: November 12, 2014

Regardless of whether a caretaker is walking a nursery, growing-finishing, or wean-to-finish barn, the facility has to be observed and evaluated at the individual pig level, pen level, and barn level. The main reason for walking a barn is to identify problems, determine why the problem is occurring, and take action to solve the problem. A walk-through requires a caretaker to make observations, listen to sounds, smell odors, feel/take room temperatures, measure relative humidity, and touch objects. The morning walk-through is usually more thorough because of the detailed observation of each individual animal, feeding system, watering system, and environment. The afternoon walk-through is less intense and mainly involves an evaluation of animal comfort, water availability, feed availability, and adequate ventilation. Caretakers need to apply their knowledge to solve the problems.

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Handling Pigs

Publish Date: April 5, 2012

Gentle handling and good husbandry practices will improve swine productivity. Reproductive performance tends to be high on farms where sows show little fear of humans, while on farms where sows are fearful of humans, reproductive performance is lower. Research shows that the performance of finishing pigs is positively affected by good stockmanship. Mistreated finishing pigs have lower weight gains.

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