Population of New Sow Research Unit Begins

CANADA - The Prairie Swine Centre has started to populate its new sow research barn at Floral, Saskatchewan, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 4 July 2008
clock icon 3 minute read

The Prairie Swine Centre's newly renovated 300 head sow research unit located just east of Floral was officially opened last month.

On Wednesday employees starting moving sows into the new facility and the barn is expected to be fully populated in about a week and a half.

Prairie Swine Centre operations manager Brian Andries says prior to the construction of the new facility sows had been housed in three separate barns, one of which was demolished last fall.

Brian Andries-Prairie Swine Centre

What this really is going to do is consolidate all of the breeding, gestation and farrowing areas into one barn.

Prior to this staff were running between three barns and one of these barns was not even linked to the other two.

The had to basically go outside, move sows across in a flat deck trailer and the piglets across to the nursery in flat deck trailers on a weekly basis.

This is going to greatly improve the efficiency of labour for the production staff and basically we'll be able to improve production because they will be able to more easily perform their job responsibilities as everything is localized.

As far a research goes, the compliments of this barn allow a different type of housing that we are going to be doing experiments on, particularly in gestation, and that research will allow sows to be fed individually in gestation stalls.

They will have no feed competition at the time of feeding and they'll be able to back out of these walk-in lock-in stalls and roam around as in group situations so it basically gives the sows the best of both worlds.

Andries says the farrowing rooms are being filled now.

He says sows that already have litters have already been moved in and animals that will be farrowing this week and next are being moved in now.

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