Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Pigs Prefer Three Square Meals A Day

Date:
June 30, 2008
Source:
BioMed Central/Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica
Summary:
Pigs raised in conventional indoor pens have different feeding patterns from those raised under more natural conditions. New research shows that while pigs in the wild spend much time searching for food and eat little and often, the preferred feeding regime for conventional raised pigs is three meals a day.

While pigs in the wild spend much time searching for food and eat little and often, the preferred feeding regime for conventional raised pigs is three meals a day, a new study has found.
Credit: iStockphoto/Vlassis Konstantakis

Pigs raised in conventional indoor pens have different feeding patterns from those raised under more natural conditions. Research shows that while pigs in the wild spend much time searching for food and eat little and often, the preferred feeding regime for conventional raised pigs is three meals a day.

Lead author, Eva Persson, from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences explains that, "The natural feeding behaviour of pigs is searching for feed by rooting activities throughout the day; self-feeding pigs randomly space their activities and generally consume between ten and twelve meals in an average day. By replicating this pattern in conventional indoor kept pigs, we had hoped they would fare better than those fed the traditional three meals."

All of the 360 pigs in the study received the same amount of food, spaced out into either three meals or nine and delivered as liquid feed. Contrary to what may be expected, feeding the pigs in a more 'natural' way did not result in a better outcome. In fact, the pigs fed three times gained over 100g more per day than the pigs fed more frequently.

As Persson reports, "Increased daily feeding occasions among group-housed pigs resulted in a poorer daily weight gain and an increased number of stomach problems. It will be of great interest to those in the farming and animal welfare fields that this study does not support increased daily feeding occasions in fattening pigs".

Each group of nine pigs in this study had to share one 3 m trough. Due to the fact that pigs will naturally fight for prime feeding positions, one likely explanation for the poorer performance in the pigs fed more often is increased competition within the group. The authors note 'More feeds mend smaller ratios each time and it is possible that each feeding occasion in our study did not offer enough feed to satisfy the hunger of all the pigs".


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BioMed Central/Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Eva Persson, Margret Wulbers-Mindermann, Charlotte Berg and Bo Algers. Increasing daily feeding occasions in restricted feeding strategies does not improve performance or well being of fattening pigs. Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, (in press)

Cite This Page:

BioMed Central/Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica. "Pigs Prefer Three Square Meals A Day." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 June 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080624110954.htm>.
BioMed Central/Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica. (2008, June 30). Pigs Prefer Three Square Meals A Day. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080624110954.htm
BioMed Central/Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica. "Pigs Prefer Three Square Meals A Day." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080624110954.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Visitors Feel Part of the Pack at Wolf Preserve

Visitors Feel Part of the Pack at Wolf Preserve

AP (July 31, 2014) Seacrest Wolf Preserve on the northern Florida panhandle allows more than 10,000 visitors each year to get up close and personal with Arctic and British Columbian Wolves. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers

Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers

AP (July 31, 2014) With Florida's panther population rebounding, some ranchers complain the protected predators are once again killing their calves. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

AP (July 30, 2014) Thousands of people are trekking to a Bavarian farmer's field to check out a mysterious set of crop circles. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins