CCTV to Help Reduce Piglet Predation Outdoors14 October 2013
UK - Cameras have been installed to help identify the causes of pre-weaning mortality on an outdoor unit in East Anglia, as part of a BPEX field trial.
Day and night time cameras will identify predators entering the pens during the night and other periods when staff are not present. There are four cameras in one field, each mounted at 10ft high and covering a 25-metre distance.
Assistant knowledge transfer manager, Samantha Bowsher, says: “We know that having a 'fox problem’ can increase mortality by anything between 2 per cent and 10 per cent in a batch but we have never done any trials to assess the true cause.
“The cameras will allow us to accurately record the number of visits by predators, what type of predators they are, how many piglets are taken and the sows’ behaviour and reactions.
“By making this information available to the industry, it will help producers develop effective ways of reducing the problem.”
As there is no power in the paddocks, the cameras transmit the footage back to the recorder, housed 400 metres away, where recorded footage is stored ready for collection.
The recorder shows when each camera was filming and when it switched off and the producer can select specific time periods to view, eg when predation is more likely.
To view photos of the cameras and recording equipment on the unit, please click here.
For more information about the trial, contact Samantha Bowsher on: 07976 980753
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