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A sequential analysis of eliminative behaviour in domestic pigs

By B. Wechsler, I. Bachmann

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Abstract

Knowledge of eliminative behaviour in pigs is of much importance for the design of housing systems in order to minimise soiling of the lying area. 53 piglets, 136 fatteners, 272 finishers and 277 sows were observed as focal animals at regularly used dunging areas in a highly structured housing system. Statistically significant transitions between behavioural elements were identified by means of a sequential analysis. The typical sequence of behavioural elements was: enter dunging area, sniff, posture, defaecate/urinate, sniff. For defaecation and urination, the percentage of sniffs classified as 'close to wall' was significantly higher before than after eliminative behaviour whereas the percentage of sniffs classified as 'close to floor' was significantly lower before than after eliminative behaviour. It is concluded that sniffing behaviour is temporally associated with eliminative behaviour in pigs.

Date 1998
Publication Title Applied Animal Behaviour Science
Volume 56
Issue 1
Pages 29-36
ISBN/ISSN 0168-1591
Language English
Author Address Bundesamt fur Veterinarwesen, Prufstelle fur Stalleinrichtungen, FAT, 8356 Tanikon, Switzerland.
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Tags
  1. Abnormal behavior
  2. Analysis
  3. Animal behavior
  4. Animal health and hygiene
  5. Animal physiology
  6. Animal rights
  7. Animal roles
  8. Animal welfare
  9. Defecation
  10. Deviant behavior
  11. Excretion
  12. Farm animals
  13. Food animals
  14. Housing
  15. Mammals
  16. Swine
  17. urination