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INFLUENCE OF NUTRITION AND BODY CONDITION AT FIRST MATING ON THE REPRODUCTIVE PERFORMANCE OF GILTS IN THE HUMID TROPICS



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INFLUENCE OF NUTRITION AND BODY CONDITION AT FIRST MATING ON THE REPRODUCTIVE PERFORMANCE OF GILTS IN THE HUMID TROPICS



ABSTRACT

Two experiments were conducted at the piggery unit of the Department of Animal Science

Farm, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, from July 2007 to March 2009, to determine the effect

of nutrition and body condition at first mating on the reproductive performance of gilts. The

first experiment evaluated the effects of feeding different combinations of protein and energy

diets on age at onset of first observed oestrus, growth rate, backfat reserve and body

condition score of the gilts from weaning to puberty. Fifty-four (54), eight week old weaner

gilts were used for this trial.

 

They were randomly assigned to nine experimental treatment

diets having different combinations of protein (16%, 18% and 20% crude protein) and energy

(2800 kcal/kg, 3000kcal/kg and 3200kcal/kg) with six (6) gilts per treatment. The gilts in

each treatment were housed in pairs making up three (3) replicates per treatment. Estrus

detection was carried out twice daily at 0800hr and 1600hrs in the presence of mature boar

beginning from the age of five months. Blood samples were collected from two pigs per

treatment by humane puncture of the ear vein for haematological and biochemical analysis. In

addition, two (2) gilts from each treatment were randomly selected, slaughtered and their

reproductive organs excised and examined. Linear body measurements (body length, chest

girth, height at withers and flank-to-flank) were also recorded. Data collected were analyzed

according to factorial arrangement of treatments in a completely randomized design (CRD)

whereas stepwise multiple linear regression analysis was used to generate prediction

equations between body weight and linear body measurements. In experiment 2, eighteen

(18) gilts with different body conditions and backfat thickness were selected and assigned to

experimental treatments with six gilts per treatment. All the gilts were weighed and mated

twice at the second observed estrus.

 

Pregnancy was confirmed by the gilt not returning to

heat after 21 days of observation for signs of heat after breeding. Gilts were fed 2.1 kg of an

18% CP diet daily throughout gestation. Their feed was increased to 3.0 kg of feed daily

during lactation until weaning. Gilts were monitored and their reproductive indices recorded

throughout gestation and lactation. The pre-weaning performances of their piglets were also

recorded until weaning at day 35. Data collected were subjected to one way analysis of

variance (ANOVA) for a completely randomized design (CRD). Results of the first

experiment indicated that diet containing 3000kcal/kg or 3200kcal/kg metabolizable energy

and 18% crude protein was the optimum required for gilts to grow faster and reach the

minimum threshold of age, body weight, backfat reserve and body condition necessary for

early attainment of first oestrus and future reproductive processes. On the other hand, the

result also showed that when pork of a moderate fatness (lean pork) is in demand, gilts should

be fed diets having 2800kcal/kg of metabolisable energy and either 16 or 18% crude protein.

High coefficient of determination (R2) values of 0.96, 0.95, 0.93 and 0.45, respectively, were

recorded between body (Y) weight and body length (BL), heart girth (HG), flank-to-flank

(FF) and height-at-withers (HW) measurements. Prediction equations for body weight of the

gilts were, Y = 0.83 x BL – 33.53, Y = 1.07 x HG – 37.86, Y = 1.22 x FF – 37.14 and Y =

0.86 x HW – 14.83. Results of the multiple linear regression showed that with effective

management, farmers, researchers and prospective pig buyers can use the prediction

equations for body length, heart girth and flank-to-flank measurements to easily estimate the

body weight of their pigs especially, during selection, drug administration and/or

determination of market weight and prices. In the second experiment, results showed that

body condition of gilts at mating affected their gestation weight gain, lactation body weight

losses, litter size at birth and weaning, growth rate of their piglets, pre-weaning mortality and

weaning-to-estrus intervals, etc in favour of gilts with normal and fat body conditions. It was

concluded that in any commercial pig industry where the management is interested in

increasing sow lifetime productivity, replacement gilts should be scored for body condition

Citation - Reference

All Project Materials Inc. (2020). INFLUENCE OF NUTRITION AND BODY CONDITION AT FIRST MATING ON THE REPRODUCTIVE PERFORMANCE OF GILTS IN THE HUMID TROPICS. Available at: https://researchcub.info/department/paper-8180.html. [Accessed: ].

INFLUENCE OF NUTRITION AND BODY CONDITION AT FIRST MATING ON THE REPRODUCTIVE PERFORMANCE OF GILTS IN THE HUMID TROPICS


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Two experiments were conducted at the piggery unit of the Department of Animal Science Farm, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, from July 2007 to March 2009, to determine the effect of nutrition and body condition at first mating on the reproductive performance of gilts. The first experiment evaluated the effects of feeding different combinations of protein and energy diets on age at onset of first observed oestrus, growth rate, backfat reserve and body condition score of the gilts from weaning to puberty. Fifty-four (54), eight week old weaner gilts were used for this trial... Click here for more

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