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Written by Thomas Sønderby Bruun, Senior Specialist, SEGES Danish Pig Research Centre, Abstract The correct feeding strategy for the lactating sow is frequently discussed, and the aim of this article is to describe the latest research results and how they should be used to support nursing capacity, average daily litter gain and subsequent reproduction. A backfat thickness at farrowing of 16 – 19 mm is furthermore a prerequisite for a succesful farrowing and a high milk production. Recent research has shown that preweaning mortality is low, and that sows that are standardised with 14 medium to large piglets are …

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Seizing the opportunities: Let DanBred sows nurse more piglets

Are the DanBred sows capable of nursing more piglets than they are given credit for? Definitely YES, confirm The Danish Pig Research Centre (DPRC) after completing an extensive trial, which explored the nursing capacity of DanBred sows. The trial concluded that when equalising litters to 15 piglets without adding milk replacement, it has no significant influence if the sow has 14 or 15 functional teats at farrowing – neither on the number of pigs weaned per weaning nor on the weight of the litter. On the contrary, there are several positive effects of letting the sows nurse more piglets, both …

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Heterosis increases litter size in DanBred production herds

Written by Helle Palmø, M.Sc., ph.d., Chief Geneticist, DanBred Focus: A study carried out by Danish Pig Research Centre (DPRC) shows that heterosis results in DanBred Hybrid sows having up to 1.5 extra piglets per litter. The vast majority of production sows in Denmark are first crosses (F1) or zigzag crosses between DanBred Landrace and DanBred Yorkshire, and the purpose of this crossbreeding is to produce sows that demonstrate the highest possible heterosis. This will ultimately have a significant impact on production efficiency and thus directly benefit DanBred customers. DanBred’s 3-way crossbreeding system is designed to make it possible to …

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Balanced pig breeding for improved global sustainability

By Helle Palmø, M.Sc., ph.d., Chief Geneticist at DanBred   The ongoing focus on global climate change and potential solutions has never been more explicit nor pertinent than it is today. Increasingly extreme weather conditions are being recorded all over the world, and the amount of scientific evidence for the global effects of greenhouse gases on the environment is increasing. Animal husbandry, including pig production, has been drawn into question due to its carbon footprint as well as the pollution of drinking water supplies from the fertilizers and pesticides used in the production of animal feed. In the future, pork …

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Managing high litter size from farrowing until weaning

By Flemming Thorup, DVM, Senior Scientist, SEGES Pig Production, Livestock Innovation, Abstract Managing a sow with less piglets than milk glands is simple. When the number of piglets at the sow exceeds the number of milk glands, you need to improve your management. Management in the farrowing unit can be divided into 4 parts. Taking care of small new born piglets Adjusting litter size to the capacity of the sow Managing the piglets day 1- 7 Managing the piglets day 8 untill weaning Keywords: piglets, litter size, colostrum, management, nurse sows   Relevant knowledge about DanBred sows DanBred sows …

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Flushing gilts initiated 5-7 days before service in second heat increases litter size

By Thomas Sønderby Bruun, Senior Specialist, SEGES Danish Pig Research Centre Abstract: Maximizing litter size in first parity is of outmost interest to optimize herd productivity. Boar exposure should be used strategically at the right gilt age and weigt to induce first heat. This allows the staff to plan the time for first service in the second heat and thereby to plan when to start the flushing period. Flushing in second heat has the potential to improve litter size in first parity. To discover the effects of flushing on hyper-prolific DanBred gilts, a large-scale experiment was conducted. Close to 2,000 …

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