Article Text

Measurement of daily live-weight gain of piglets at weekly intervals in the investigation of poor growth performance
  1. S Nimmo,
  2. TA Pepper and
  3. DJ Taylor

Abstract

The weights of 10 litters of pigs were recorded weekly to eight weeks of age and the time required to reach slaughter weight was also recorded in a herd with poor eight-week weaning weights (mean 13.9 kg). The mean rate of daily live-weight gain was calculated for weekly periods for the pigs of five litters to eight weeks of age. Significant falls in growth rate were found in the second and sixth weeks of life. The check in the sixth week of life could be associated with weaning and accompanying enteritis but that in the second week could not be definitely associated with any specific disease or management factor. When the group was divided into two on the basis of eight-week weights greater and less than 16.0 kg, animals in the lighter group were found to have significantly lower mean birth weights and lower mean rates of daily live-weight gain from eight weeks to slaughter. Trials in which piglets were given a multivitamin injection at three weeks of age or in which the rations of sows were increased during both pregnancy and lactation showed no significant improvement in eight-week weaning weights.

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