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  1. Testing post-weaning food motivation in low and normal birth weight pigs in a runway and operant conditioning task

    Contributor(s):: van Eck, L. M., Antonides, A., Nordquist, R. E., van der Staay, F. J.

    Low birth weight (LBW) pigs face more welfare challenges than their normal birth weight (NBW) siblings. Understanding the underlying mechanisms of cognitive and learning abilities in these pigs may help to improve their welfare. Early competition in life over resources, combined with the higher...

  2. Rearing piglets in multi-litter group lactation systems: Effects on piglet aggression and injuries post-weaning

    Contributor(s):: Verdon, Megan, Morrison, Rebecca S., Hemsworth, Paul H.

    This experiment investigated the effects of rearing piglets in a multi-litter lactation system on piglet aggression at weaning. The following four pre-weaning treatments were applied to 72 sows and their litters (n=642 piglets); (1) Farrowing crate (‘FC’ − n=24 sows), (2) PigSAFE pens, in which...

  3. Day-night behaviour and performance of barrows and gilts (70–100kg) fed low protein diets with different levels of tryptophan and B6 vitamin

    Contributor(s):: Castilha, Leandro Dalcin, Sangali, Cleiton Pagliari, Esteves, Lucas Antonio Costa, Muniz, Camila Francisca, Furlan, Antonio Claudio, Vasconcellos, Ricardo Souza, Pozza, Paulo Cesar

    Tryptophan (Trp) is involved in regulation of animal behaviour, since it originates serotonin and melatonin, especially in low crude protein diets, and Trp metabolism requires B6 vitamin (B6) as enzymatic cofactor. The objective of this study was to feed low protein diets with different levels of...

  4. Does litter size affect emotionality, spatial learning and memory in piglets?

    Contributor(s):: Fijn, Lisa, Antonides, Alexandra, Aalderink, Dave, Nordquist, Rebecca E., van der Staay, Franz Josef

    Average litter size has steadily increased over the past decades in the pig farming industry. Large litters are associated with an increase of piglets born with a lower birth weight and reduced overall piglet viability. The aim of our study was to investigate whether litter size affects...

  5. Identifying blood-based biomarkers associated with aggression in weaned pigs after mixing

    Contributor(s):: Shen, Chunyan, Tong, Xian, Chen, Ruonan, Gao, Siyuan, Liu, Xinpeng, Schinckel, Allan P., Li, Yuan, Xu, Feilong, Zhou, Bo

    Animal behavior, including agonistic behavior, is regulated by various neurotransmitters and hormones in the blood. To Identify blood-based biomarkers associated with aggression in weaned pigs after mixing, a total of 500 weaned pigs from 65 litters were selected and mixed into 51 pens with...

  6. Temporal development of agonistic interactions as well as dominance indices and centrality parameters in pigs after mixing

    Contributor(s):: Büttner, Kathrin, Czycholl, Irena, Mees, Katharina, Krieter, Joachim

    Previous studies showed that depending on different factors, such as age, level of familiarity or group size, the number of agonistic interactions in pigs directly after mixing can demonstrate a large variation: from groups which reveal a clear decline in agonistic interactions one day after...

  7. Factors of potential influence on different behavioural tests in fattening pigs

    Contributor(s):: Mieloch, F. J., Nietfeld, S., Straßburg, C., Krieter, J., Grosse Beilage, E., Czycholl, I.

    The present study aimed at isolating factors of potential influence on the Novel-Object Test (NOT), the Forced Human-Approach Test (FHAT), the Voluntary Human-Approach Test (VHAT) and the Human-Animal Relationship Test (HART) to draw conclusions about factors that should be considered when using...

  8. Surveillance for respiratory and diarrheal pathogens at the human-pig interface in Sarawak, Malaysia

    Full-text: Available

    | Contributor(s):: Laura K. Borkenhagen, Kerry A. Mallinson, Rick W. Tsao, Siaw-Jing Ha, Wei-Honn Lim, Teck-Hock Toh, Benjamin D. Anderson, Jane K. Fieldhouse, Sarah E. Philo, Kuek-Sen Chong, William G. Lindsley, Alejandro Ramirez, James F. Lowe, Kristen K. Coleman, Gregory C. Gray

    Background The large livestock operations and dense human population of Southeast Asia are considered a hot-spot for emerging viruses. Objectives To determine if the pathogens adenovirus (ADV), coronavirus (CoV), encephalomyocarditis virus (EMCV), enterovirus (EV), influenza A-D (IAV, IBV, ICV,...

  9. Pigs (Sus scrofa domesticus) categorize pictures of human heads

    | Contributor(s):: Wondrak, Marianne, Conzelmann, Elin, Veit, Ariane, Huber, Ludwig

    Scientists as well as farmers are increasingly interested in the mental capacities of pigs. Recent research has revealed surprising cognitive abilities, such as episodic memory, intentional deception and even theory of mind. Still, our knowledge about perceptuo-cognitive abilities, especially in...

  10. Selection of putative indicators of positive emotions triggered by object and social play in mini-pigs

    | Contributor(s):: Marcet Rius, Míriam, Cozzi, Alessandro, Bienboire-Frosini, Cécile, Teruel, Eva, Chabaud, Camille, Monneret, Philippe, Leclercq, Julien, Lafont-Lecuelle, Céline, Pageat, Patrick

    Positive welfare is more than the absence of negative experiences. Nevertheless, there are few feasible animal-based measures for positive welfare. This study aimed to investigate whether object and social play behaviours in pigs, which is believed to trigger positive emotions, is linked to...

  11. The translation of animal welfare research into practice: The case of mixing aggression between pigs

    | Contributor(s):: Peden, Rachel S. E., Turner, Simon P., Boyle, Laura A., Camerlink, Irene

    Aggression between unfamiliar pigs at mixing is a major animal welfare problem in commercial farming. It has been studied since the 1970s and remains an important topic in animal welfare research. Methods to reduce pig aggression at mixing have been reviewed previously, but there has been little...

  12. Drinker position influences the cleanness of the lying area of pigs in a welfare-friendly housing facility

    | Contributor(s):: Ocepek, Marko, Goold, Conor M., Busančić, Mirjana, Aarnink, André J. A.

    Understanding eliminative behaviour in pigs is a priority for designing pig facilities. Pigs prefer to lie in areas separated from where they eliminate (urinate, defecate). Welfare-friendly housing facilities include separate areas for lying (solid floors) and elimination (slatted floors). To...

  13. Tail posture as a detector of tail damage and an early detector of tail biting in finishing pigs

    | Contributor(s):: Larsen, Mona Lilian Vestbjerg, Andersen, Heidi Mai-Lis, Pedersen, Lene Juul

    The purpose of the current study was to investigate the relation between the tail posture of finishing pigs and tail damage with the aims to use tail posture as (1) a detector of tail damage, (2) an early detector of tail biting to possibly predict and prevent bleeding tail damage. Tails of each...

  14. Tail posture predicts tail biting outbreaks at pen level in weaner pigs

    | Contributor(s):: Lahrmann, Helle Pelant, Hansen, Christian Fink, D’Eath, Rick, Busch, Marie Erika, Forkman, Björn

    Detecting a tail biting outbreak early is essential to reduce the risk of pigs getting severe tail damage. A few previous studies suggest that tail posture and behavioural differences can predict an upcoming outbreak. The aim of the present study was therefore to investigate if differences in...

  15. Sow free farrowing behaviour: Experiential, seasonal and individual variation

    | Contributor(s):: King, Rebecca L., Baxter, Emma M., Matheson, Stephanie M., Edwards, Sandra A.

    Although sow confinement at farrowing is inherently stressful, farrowing crates remain in widespread commercial use. Sows adapt to their environment, however adaptation may be counter-productive if the farrowing system changes. The current study observed the behaviour of second parity sows...

  16. Housing, ease of handling and minimising inter-pig aggression at mixing for nursery to finishing pigs as reported in a survey of North American pork producers

    | Contributor(s):: Ison, S. H., Bates, R. O., Ernst, C. W., Steibel, J. P., Siegford, J. M.

    Inter-pig aggression is a welfare issue that has undergone extensive research. Although management techniques have proven useful in minimising aggression in research settings, it is not known how often these are used on farm. One objective of an online survey of North American pork producers was...

  17. Do sows respond to sibling competition at the udder Day 1 post-partum?

    | Contributor(s):: Illmann, Gudrun, Leszkowová, Iva, Šimečková, Marie

    The aim of the present follow-up study was to assess sibling competition during nursing on Day 1 post-partum (i.e., 24 h after the end of parturition), as well as whether sows respond to increased sibling competition. A total of 19 healthy sows and their piglets were directly observed and video...

  18. Influence of mild feed restriction and mild reduction in dietary amino acid content on feeding behaviour of group-housed growing pigs

    | Contributor(s):: Carcò, Giuseppe, Dalla Bona, Mirco, Carraro, Luca, Latorre, Maria Angeles, Fondevila, Manuel, Gallo, Luigi, Schiavon, Stefano

    This study investigates changes in the feeding behaviour of pigs as a result of a restriction in their feed allowance and a reduction in dietary indispensable amino acid (AA) content. Ninety-six Topig Talent x PIC barrows were housed in 8 pens and individually fed either ad libitum (AL) or a...

  19. Evaluating environmental enrichment as a method to alleviate pain after castration and tail docking in pigs

    | Contributor(s):: Backus, Brittany L., McGlone, John J.

    Castration and tail docking are common management practices performed on commercial swine farms in the US and around the world to reduce adverse behaviors and the occurrence of boar taint. However, these practices themselves are a welfare concern for the piglet because they cause acute pain. The...

  20. Factors of potential influence on different behavioural tests in fattening pigs

    | Contributor(s):: Mieloch, F. J., Nietfeld, S., Straßburg, C., Krieter, J., Grosse Beilage, E., Czycholl, I.