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Posts Tagged ‘animal welfare’

From a release:

The annual Shakespeare Swine Seminar for producers and allied industry personnel will be held at the Shakespeare Community Centre tomorrow, Wednesday, September 24th in Shakespeare. Sponsored by Ontario Pork, the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs, and Ontario Swine Improvement, this year’s seminar focuses on topics of current and practical interest to swine producers.

Dr. Darwin Reicks from the Swine Veterinary Center in St. Peter, Minnesota will discuss methods to ensure maximum litter size and reproductive performance when using artificial insemination. Dr. Mark Rix from Swine Management Systems in Fremont, Nebraska will discuss on-farm factors associated with weaning 30 pigs per sow per year as well as providing production comparisons between farms with sows in gestation stalls and farms using group sow housing. Dr. Tim McAllister from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will discuss the future of antibiotic use in livestock production and how to ensure antibiotics are used appropriately to ensure long term effectiveness. A panel on successful control and elimination of PED will discuss various approaches being used on Ontario farms at present to manage the disease. Additional speakers will address specific techniques to decrease pre-weaning mortality.

Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. with presentations starting at 10 a.m. A hot lunch is provided and the meeting concludes at 3 p.m. The cost is $30 if pre-registered and $25 for additional people from the same farm. Registration is $40 at the door. To register please call the Agricultural Information Contact Centre at 877- 424 -1300 or email ag.info.omafra@ontario.ca.

The Shakespeare Swine Seminar is always well received by producers, with lots of practical information and plenty of discussion. Please take note that it is tomorrow, Wednesday the 24th, in Shakespeare. I’ll see you there.

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Group Sow Housing Workshop – Still time to register

One-Day Either September 2 or 3, 2014 Festival Inn Stratford

8:45 am to 4:00 pm

This one-day workshop being offered by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs with help from Ontario Pork and the Prairie Swine Centre will present group sow housing options that follow the new Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Pigs.

Three Ontario producers describing their experiences transitioning to group sow housing systems. Hear their challenges and opportunities and gain practical advice you can apply on your farm. Equipment suppliers will be present.

  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of sow housing systems? Dr. Jennifer Brown and Dr. Yolande Seddon, Prairie Swine Centre Group Sow Housing Researchers, will discuss the merits of each system.
  • Dr. Kees de Lange, University of Guelph, will explain how your feeding systems need to change for a successful transition to feeding sows in group housing.

Pre-registration is required. For more information or to register contact doug.richards@ontario.ca

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OMAF/MRA, with help from Ontario Pork and the Prairie Swine Centre, are organizing group sow housing workshops for early September, at the Festival Inn in Stratford. The workshop will be repeated on two consecutive days, so you have the choice of either September 2nd or September 3rd, from about 9:30 to 4pm. Cost is $50, and includes workshop manual, lunch, and coffee breaks.

The purpose of the workshops is

“To build producers’ awareness and knowledge of the requirements and options for group sow housing. These will be based on the new Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Pigs released this past March.”

Pig Code of Practice Cover The Workshops will feature three Ontario producers describing their experiences transitioning to group sow housing systems. Hear their challenges and opportunities and gain practical advice you can apply on your farm.

To discuss the advantages and disadvantages of group sow housing systems, Dr. Jennifer Brown and Dr. Yolande Seddon, both Prairie Swine Centre Group Sow Housing Researchers, will discuss the merits of different systems.

Dr. Kees de Lange, from the University of Guelph, will talk on feeding sows in group housing.

A key objective of the workshop is to stimulate discussion among the presenters and those attending. Everyone’s operation is different, so novel and creative approaches to managing a change in practices is essential for success.

You can register by calling the Clinton OMAF/MRA office at 519-482-3333 or by email to sandra.mccann@ontario.ca.  Space is limited and pre-registration is required by August 26th.  If you would like more information about the workshops, contact Doug Richards at 519-482-3133 or doug.richards@ontario.ca.

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We may not be quite experiencing a heat wave yet, but there is sure to be hot weather coming. Anyone caring for livestock needs to be prepared for high temperatures.

OMAFRA has produced a free Heat Stress in Livestock and Poultry app for smartphones that can help determine when livestock are at risk of heat stress on the spot, either in the barn or at time of transport.

By entering the current temperature and relative humidity on your smartphone you can estimate heat stress risks quickly and easily. The app also suggests steps to take to reduce heat stress to maintain feed intake and productivity.

appCheck it out here.

The app is useful in assessing a whether a crisis is imminent, but routine maintenance can help avoid risk too. This would be a good time to clean fans, check that louvers and inlets are moving freely, and clean up the sensors and controllers. Ventilation systems need to be working at maximum efficiency and need to be tuned properly to maintain temperature and humidity at acceptable levels. A ventilation system failure can be catastrophic. Even alarm systems can fail so constant vigilance is required when things get hot.

When it it does get really hot outside, ventilation alone can’t provide adequate cooling. When pigs are too hot, they don’t eat. Pigs that don’t eat don’t grow. This is most apparent in heavier pigs nearing market, when the upper preferred temperature of the pig is only around 21C.

There are a few things that can be done to help keep pigs from overheating. Pigs need to lose heat either by contact with a cold surface, or through evaporation of water from their body surface. Since they don’t sweat, that moisture must come from somewhere else. Water sprinklers or drip systems are effective ways of providing relief from heat stress. 1-2 minutes of sprinkling every 20-30 minutes is all that is needed. Time it so that the water is nearly all evaporated before reaching the floor, and so that the ventilation system has time to clear the humidity before the next application.

Adequate drinking water is absolutely critical. Make sure there are enough drinkers for your animals. Go get wet and cool off yourself by thoroughly inspecting every drinker in your barn.

If you can’t make use of the Heat Stress app, this table can be used instead. The intersection of current temperature and humidity indicates the level of stress pigs may be facing, and the level of response that needs to be taken to reduce it (see below for some more options).

 

Signs of heat stress
• Evident discomfort/distress, pigs lying apart, body stretched out
• Manure patterns change, pen floors become wet/dirty, pigs all dirty
• Increased water consumption (up to 6x normal)
• Noticeable decrease in pen activity, slowness and lethargy
• Muscle trembling
• Rapid fall in feed consumption/reduced weight gains, pigs seem to stall out
• Very high respiration rate (panting)

Pigs will try to increase heat dissipation and decrease body heat production. Producers can aid this by making sure that:

• Pigs have unrestricted access to a good supply of clean water
• Timed water sprinkler/mister system triggered by room temperature
• Proper ventilation for the size of room/weight of pig/time of year
• Enough pen space for size of pigs, do not overcrowd (all the pigs can lie down without touching each other and still access feeders/waterers/dunging area without stepping on pen mates)
• Diets can be reformulated in the summer to be more nutrient dense, while ensuring
nutrient needs (amount/day) are still being met.

Transport during any season is also an area the can cause heat stress in pigs and may result in death loss. When possible try to:
• Load animals in groups less than five
• Adjust transport to early morning or at night (summer)
• Load fewer pigs per load on hot, humid days
• Provide wet shavings when temperature is over 15C, do not use straw
• When temperature is over 27C, sprinkle pigs with a course spray of water prior to loading
• Do not pour large amounts over cold water over on an overheated pig as the shock may kill it
• Load and unload promptly to avoid heat buildup
• Death loss due to heat stress is most often attributed to power outages in hog barns when there is no alternate power source or power loss back-up plan. Test your alternate power generation and power outage alarms monthly for fan operated barns
(static pressure barns). Check panic doors/drop curtain releases for natural ventilated barns. Heat build-up non-ventilated barns can cause fatalities in all seasons.

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Visit the OMAF/MRA exhibit at the OPC for information about environmental enrichment for pigs, the Ontario Grading Data Explorer computer program, hog marketing, and more.

ENRICHMENT

What are enrichment toys?
Materials and objects suitable for chewing and rooting are often called enrichment toys.
Why do pigs need enrichment toys?
All pigs have a need to chew and root. By providing en-richment toys this need is satisfied and tail and ear biting may be reduced.
How many toys do I need?
Too few toys will result in competition. Have enough toys in different locations so that as many pigs as possible can easily use them at the same time.
Can I make them myself?
Yes, you can make your own enrichment toys. Pick up our flyer with links to websites that provide instructions and information on enrichment toys.

GDXMain
ONTARIO GRADING DATA EXPLORER

Easy access to online grading data to help in decision making and in hitting production targets to improve revenue. 

Ask to arrange for a demonstration, or pick up a brochure for more information.

HOG MARKETING

Take on the Hog Marketing Challenge. It is meant to be a learning experience on paper with no money or pigs involved but using real time market information. Put your market knowledge and expertise to work and learn how some marketing tools function.

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A release from the London Swine Conference yesterday www.londonswineconference.ca.

Note the Registration deadline is March 14th. Contact 519-873-4077 or debra.allison@ontario.ca

For Immediate Release…

  “14th London Swine Conference (LSC) moves to Hilton”

 London ON, March 4, 2014 – The theme is “Positioning for Success” as the pork industry prepares to gather in London for the fourteenth annual LSC.  These two full days of presentations and workshops have moved to the Hilton London for Wednesday and Thursday, March 26 & 27, 2014.  Speakers will cover topics ranging from practical on-farm decision making and management to the impacts of international trade on pork production.

 “I am excited about the timely topics with something for everyone” says conference Chair Teresa Van Raay.  The program will once again be targeted for sow herds on Wednesday, and wean to finish on Thursday.  “With speakers from across the continent and a new venue I am looking forward to seeing everyone at this premier swine industry conference.”

Wednesday’s Sow-focused agenda will include ‘Lessons Learned from PEDv’, along with experts in the areas of group sow housing, nutrition and lactation, and Ontario’s position in the global marketplace.  At the farm level, workshops will consider piglet and milk management, reproductive troubleshooting, feeding the sow, and practical aspects of  group sow housing.

On Thursday, the focus is on Wean to Finish.  Topics such as real factors that affect profitability, the importance of international trade to Ontario production, and national health status monitoring will be covered.  Farm level workshops will include managing pile-ups, benchmarking and measuring profitability on-farm, spotting problems early, higher fiber diets, and improving feed efficiency.

As always, the LSC program will include leading researchers, industry experts and pork producers.  This unique mix of perspectives provides new insights and can lead to lively workshop discussions.  Presenters this year will include:  Steve Pollmann, Murphy Brown West; Doug MacDougald, South West Ontario Veterinary Services; Chris Byra, Canadian Swine Health Intelligence Network; Ron Bates, Michigan State University; Laurie Connor, University of Manitoba; Chantal Farmer, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada; Ruurd Zijlstra, University of Alberta; Kevin Grier, George Morris Centre; Graeme McDermid, Cronin Pork Ltd.; Kathleen Sullivan, Trade Consultant.

For a listing of all conference speakers and the full program visit:  www.londonswineconference.ca

Conference fees are $135 per day which includes one copy of the proceedings, a reception on Wednesday, lunch and all coffee breaks.  Discounts are available for groups of five or more who register and submit one payment.  Registration deadline is March 14, 2014.  Please note that there is no registration at the door.

The London Swine Conference is a joint effort by staff from Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food and Ministry of Rural Affairs (OMAF and MRA), Ontario Pork, University of Guelph, Ontario Pork Industry Council, and is made possible through strong industry sponsorship.

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 For more information:

Debra Allison, Registration Coordinator, OMAF and MRA, (519) 873-4077, Debra.Allison@ontario.ca, www.londonswineconference.ca

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The complete proceedings of the 33rd Centralia Swine Research Update, held January 29th, are now available online at www.centraliaswineresearch.ca. Besides the presented topics, the proceedings contain more than twenty written contributions.

The meeting was well-attended and generated many favourable comments on everything from the great presentations to the pie.

Centralia 2014 logo small The Centralia Swine Research Update was initiated in 1982 by staff at Centralia College to bring researchers and their work together with participants in the pork industry. The event continues to be planned and executed by a committee of industry partners, with support from staff at OMAF and MRA. Its success over the past three decades is due to the quality and timeliness of the program, and the participation of local researchers and experts, as well as experts brought in from other areas.

This year’s program was a great example of this, with Dr. Yolande Seddon from the Prairie Swine Centre in Saskatchewan visiting to speak on ‘Sow Lameness, Being Aware and Taking Action’ and ‘Considerations for Providing Quality Space to Loose Housed Sows’.  Dr. Kees de Lange from the University of Guelph talked about ‘Entire Males for Commercial Pork Production’.  Frank Wood from Conestoga Meat Packers addressed hernias from a packers’ perspective. To round out the program, researchers and graduate students covered in-transit losses, antimicrobial resistance, rodenticide ingestion, genetic resistance to disease, benchmarking Ontario farms, anorexic piglets, and the impact of nursery diets on piglet immune response. Finally, Dr. Mike DeGroot from Ontario Pork gave an update on the evolving PED situation.

For advisory notices, and for regularly updated links to information and resources for the industry related to PED, visit Ontario.ca/swine.

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