The effects of straw bedding on the feeding and social behaviour of growing pigs fed by means of single-space feeders

CA Morgan*, LA Deans, AB Lawrence, BL Nielsen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Single-space feeders used in pig selection may favour those pigs which control access to the feeder. This was not the case when straw bedding was provided (Nielsen et al. 1995). However, straw may have modified behaviour and masked the effects of aggression. Therefore an experiment was conducted to examine the influence of straw bedding on behaviour and performance of pigs fed via a single-space feeder. The food intake, growth rate, feeding and social behaviour of 8 pens of 10 pigs (start weight 40 kg) with or without straw (4 pens/treatment) were recorded over a period of 35 days. Food was supplied by one single-space computerised feeder in each pen and this equipment provided records of feeding behaviour. Social behaviour and activity was observed by video recording on two occasions in week 2 and week 4 of the experiment. Each pen had an enclosed kennel. The provision of straw increased the number of visits to the feeder (13.11 vs. 9.22; P <0.05) and these were of a shorter duration (4.34 vs. 6.18 min; P

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-33
Number of pages11
JournalApplied Animal Behaviour Science
Volume58
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1998

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • pig-feeding and nutrition
  • single-space feeders
  • straw
  • social behaviour
  • PERFORMANCE
  • WHITE

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