Effects of varying floor space on aggressive behavior and cortisol concentrations in group-housed sows
PH Hemsworth, RS Morrison, AJ Tilbrook, KL Butler, M Rice, SJ Moeller
JOURNAL OF ANIMAL SCIENCE | OXFORD UNIV PRESS INC | Published : 2016
Floor space is an important determinant of aggression and stress in group-housed sows, and the aim of the present experiment was to comprehensively examine the effects of floor space in the range of 1.45 to 2.90 m/sow from mixing until 27 d after insemination on aggression, stress, and reproduction of group-housed sows. A previous experiment on the effects of floor space indicated spatial variability across and along the research facility in both sow aggression and stress. To minimize this spatial variability within the research facility, similar-sized pens but with varying groups sizes (10-20) in 4 separate blocks of 3 contiguous pens within each of 9 time replicates (180 sows/replicate) we..View full abstract
The research reported here was supported by the Australian Pork Co-operative Research Centre and Rivalea, Australia. The authors gratefully acknowledge K. O'Halloran, A. Wilson, and M. Webb for technical assistance.