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Loading and Unloading Finishing Pigs: Effects of Bedding Types, Ramp Angle, and Bedding Moisture.

Garcia A, McGlone JJ - Animals (Basel) (2014)

Bottom Line: Heart rate and the total time it took to load and unload the ramp increased as the slope of the ramp increased (p < 0.05).Heart rates were higher during the summer than winter, and summer heart rates increased as the slope increased (p < 0.05).The current study suggests that several factors should be considered in combination to identify the appropriate bedding for the specific occasion.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Animal and Food Sciences, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX 79409, USA. arlene.garcia@ttu.edu.

ABSTRACT
The use of non-slip surfaces during loading and unloading of finishing pigs plays an important role in animal welfare and economics of the pork industry. Currently, the guidelines available only suggest the use of ramps with a slope below 20 degrees to load and unload pigs. However, the total time it takes to load and unload animals and slips, falls, and vocalizations are a welfare concern. Three ramp angles (0, 10 or 20 degrees), five bedding materials (nothing, sand, feed, wood shavings or wheat straw hay), two moistures (dry or wet bedding, >50% moisture) over two seasons (>23.9 °C summer, <23.9 °C winter) were assessed for slips/falls/vocalizations (n = 2400 pig observations) and analyzed with a scoring system. The use of bedding during summer or winter played a role in the total time it took to load and unload the ramp (p < 0.05). Bedding, bedding moisture, season, and slope significantly interacted to impact the total time to load and unload finishing pigs (p < 0.05). Heart rate and the total time it took to load and unload the ramp increased as the slope of the ramp increased (p < 0.05). Heart rates were higher during the summer than winter, and summer heart rates increased as the slope increased (p < 0.05). The current study suggests that several factors should be considered in combination to identify the appropriate bedding for the specific occasion.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Least Squares means for average heart rate for different beddings during summer or winter season (p < 0.01). Bedding abbreviations N = nothing, F = feed, S = sand, WS = wood shavings, H = hay. Average heart rate within season. Superscripts without a common letter are different at p < 0.05 within bedding.
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animals-05-00013-f004: Least Squares means for average heart rate for different beddings during summer or winter season (p < 0.01). Bedding abbreviations N = nothing, F = feed, S = sand, WS = wood shavings, H = hay. Average heart rate within season. Superscripts without a common letter are different at p < 0.05 within bedding.

Mentions: The use of bedding on the ramp significantly affected finishing pig heart rates in the summer (p < 0.01) but not in the winter. Heart rates were lower for feed than they were for other beddings during the summer (Figure 4). All other beddings did not differ in their effect on heart rates during the summer. The use of feed also had lower loading and unloading times, possibly suggesting that familiarity with a bedding may reduce both heart rates and loading and unloading times. Additionally, there were not any differences in heart rates based on the bedding used during the winter.


Loading and Unloading Finishing Pigs: Effects of Bedding Types, Ramp Angle, and Bedding Moisture.

Garcia A, McGlone JJ - Animals (Basel) (2014)

Least Squares means for average heart rate for different beddings during summer or winter season (p < 0.01). Bedding abbreviations N = nothing, F = feed, S = sand, WS = wood shavings, H = hay. Average heart rate within season. Superscripts without a common letter are different at p < 0.05 within bedding.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4494331&req=5

animals-05-00013-f004: Least Squares means for average heart rate for different beddings during summer or winter season (p < 0.01). Bedding abbreviations N = nothing, F = feed, S = sand, WS = wood shavings, H = hay. Average heart rate within season. Superscripts without a common letter are different at p < 0.05 within bedding.
Mentions: The use of bedding on the ramp significantly affected finishing pig heart rates in the summer (p < 0.01) but not in the winter. Heart rates were lower for feed than they were for other beddings during the summer (Figure 4). All other beddings did not differ in their effect on heart rates during the summer. The use of feed also had lower loading and unloading times, possibly suggesting that familiarity with a bedding may reduce both heart rates and loading and unloading times. Additionally, there were not any differences in heart rates based on the bedding used during the winter.

Bottom Line: Heart rate and the total time it took to load and unload the ramp increased as the slope of the ramp increased (p < 0.05).Heart rates were higher during the summer than winter, and summer heart rates increased as the slope increased (p < 0.05).The current study suggests that several factors should be considered in combination to identify the appropriate bedding for the specific occasion.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Animal and Food Sciences, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX 79409, USA. arlene.garcia@ttu.edu.

ABSTRACT
The use of non-slip surfaces during loading and unloading of finishing pigs plays an important role in animal welfare and economics of the pork industry. Currently, the guidelines available only suggest the use of ramps with a slope below 20 degrees to load and unload pigs. However, the total time it takes to load and unload animals and slips, falls, and vocalizations are a welfare concern. Three ramp angles (0, 10 or 20 degrees), five bedding materials (nothing, sand, feed, wood shavings or wheat straw hay), two moistures (dry or wet bedding, >50% moisture) over two seasons (>23.9 °C summer, <23.9 °C winter) were assessed for slips/falls/vocalizations (n = 2400 pig observations) and analyzed with a scoring system. The use of bedding during summer or winter played a role in the total time it took to load and unload the ramp (p < 0.05). Bedding, bedding moisture, season, and slope significantly interacted to impact the total time to load and unload finishing pigs (p < 0.05). Heart rate and the total time it took to load and unload the ramp increased as the slope of the ramp increased (p < 0.05). Heart rates were higher during the summer than winter, and summer heart rates increased as the slope increased (p < 0.05). The current study suggests that several factors should be considered in combination to identify the appropriate bedding for the specific occasion.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus