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Konferensartikel - Refereegranskat, 2005

The effect of three different weaning ages on pig performance and ammonia emissions

Breuer, K; Docking, C; Agostini, Francesco
Breuer, K (red.)


Increasing weaning age may be a means for dealing with the ban on antibiotic growth promoters, enabling piglets to develop a more mature gut to cope with the weaning process. The implications for the environment in increasing weaning age are unknown. It was the objective of this study to assess the effect of weaning age on slurry volume and composition, and ammonia emissions. A total of 36 first parity sows and their litters (Large White  Landrace  White Duroc) were studied over 12 weeks with three weaning age treatments: four (4ww), six (6ww) or eight (8ww) weeks of age. The volume and composition of slurry, ammonia emissions, feed input and growth of animals was recorded. The effect of treatment was analysed with analysis of variance. Total feed consumed did not differ between treatments. Weaning age did not affect daily ammonia emissions, but less NH3-N was emitted by the 8ww system for at least part of the production cycle. However, there were fewer animals in this system in our study due the removal of one sow and coincidentally smaller mean litters. An 8ww system may require more breeding animals (to produce the same number of weaned pigs as the earlier weaning systems, to be validated) which will increase excretal N output and, therefore, increased potential for environmental emissions. The results suggest that increasing weaning age will not increase the nitrogen load to the environment

Publicerad i


57th EAAP meeting

    UKÄ forskningsämne

    Animal and Dairy Science
    Veterinary Science

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