Water supply and activation of piglets

Water intake has a direct correlation to feed intake. Both are important to ensure that pigs in the climate controlled environment section can perform at their best.

How can you achieve 500 g of daily gain in the climate controlled environment section?

If higher daily gain is the aim, try focusing on increasing feed intake to 0.9 FU (feed unit) per day.
See below list of four key points that can contribute to increased feed intake, and thus a higher gain.

  • Adapt your strategy in the weaner units according to the pigs you receive. 1 kg lower weight on weaning means having to use a starter mix for an extra 5-7 days
  • Try to ensure that the feed mixture used is suitable for the size of the pig
  • Activate with dry feed dispensed onto the floor or in troughs 5 times a day, in addition to unlimited feed in a feeder
  • Ensure there is plenty of water available, and that water cups/valves give at least 2 litres per minute

What can you do in practice as far as water is concerned?

One of Vilomix´ Danish customers has found a solution for optimising water intake and activate weaners brought into the climate controlled environment section, which contributes to higher feed intake - which is often a challenge encountered in the first 14 days.

Using the sprinkler system, a pipe is run down with a drip valve on the end, which drips down into the water bowl. The system works for around 1 minute at 10 minute intervals for the first 2 or 3 weeks. However, it is switched off at night. A very simple, cheap solution, that costs EUR 11-13 per pen in materials.

The Danish pig producer experiences that he has fewer pigs suffering from dehydration, and can see that when the system is running, some pigs are activated to seek water and feed.

Current production results:

No. of sows                                   800

Weaned pigs/year sows               37

Daily gain, climate                  470 g

Feed consumption                       1,8 FU/kg daily gain

Feed dose                                      0,85 FU/day

Mortality rate                              2,7 %