Effects of increasing the frequency of suckling, ...

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Title Effects of increasing the frequency of suckling, induced by maternal vocalizations, on the live weight of piglets. / Determinación del efecto de una mayor frecuencia de amamantamiento, inducido por vocalizaciones maternas, sobre el peso de cerdos lechones hasta el destete
Author(s) C. Contreras S, F. Mujica C, L. A. Bate
Journal Advances in Animal Production / Avances en Producción Animal
Date 2001
Volume 26
Issue 1
Start page 165
End page 173
Abstract The objective of this study was to determine if using maternal sounds, at a higher frequency, associated with lactation, would indirectly influence milk production by the sow, thus increasing litter weight. The litters of 36 crossbred sows were allocated into 4 experimental groups. The study was divided into 2 phases with a control and a sound-stimulated group; a total of 408 lactating sows were involved in this study. The sounds of the nursing sows were recorded using a video camera, and was reproduced in the farrowing pen using a stereo system. The treatment consisted of reproducing the sound for 3 minutes every 59 or 49 minutes for the first and second phase, respectively. Exposing sows and litters to maternal vocalizations resulted in increased liveweight of the litter. The effect was more evident when the frequency of stimulation was approximately 50 minutes. It was observed that the increase in growth, which has to be mediated by an increase in milk production, was brought about by a temporary increase in feed intake. This possibility was reinforced by the fact that the sows producing heavier litters eat more and do not manifest any decrease in subsequent reproductive performance.

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