Computerization of Sow Feeding And Estrous Detection – Tests Under Low-Invesment Housing Conditons in Kansas

Kansas State University Swine Research. In Exp. 1, weight change, backfat thickness, and litter size were compared for gilts fed individually or with a computer-controlled electronic sow feeder provided by Osborne Ind., Inc. and NEDAP-Poiesz, B.V. Twenty gilts were fed by each method, and no treatment effects were observed. In Exp. 2, electronic monitoring of visits to a boar were studied to evaluate the potential of the data to predict time of estrus. A very good correlation between boar visitation and estrous behavior was obtained. The data indicate that gilts can be fed with computer-controlled equipment under outside housing conditions in Kansas. Further, there is potential for developing a computer controlled system to electronically detect estrus in pigs.