Swine Production Technologies (Part 1)
Hog raising is a very popular enterprise in the Philippines such that there is a proliferation of backyard producers, which dominates the swine industry and a healthy viable commercial sector.
Despite the crises facing the swine industry, still many people are venturing in this enterprise. This manual hopes to bring appropriate technology to the interested farmers and would-be swine producers in order that they may realize profitable production and improve their quality of life.
Kinds of Swine
|BREED||COLOR||EARS||TYPE||COUNTRY OF ORIGIN||OBSERVATIONS|
|Landrace||White||Hanging||Meat||Denmark||Long face, good mothers, weak legs, prolific|
|Largewhite||White||Standing||Meat||England||Fertile, high quality meat, fast grower|
|Berkshire||Black with 6 White points||Standing||Meat||USA||Short, black skin, more resistant to diseases compared to white breeds|
|Hampshire||Black with White bands||Standing||Meat||USA||Short, good quality meat, strong legs|
|Duroc Jersey||Black and White||2/3 erect 1/3 hanging||Meat||USA||Good constitution, strong legs, fast grower, resistant to stress|
|Pietrain||Black and White||Standing||Very meaty||Belgium||Very meaty ham and loin, very susceptible to stress|
Landrace are white, have short legs and medium to large drooping ears. The sows are noted for their excellence in mothering ability and litter size. They are heavy milkers and produce pigs with superior rate of growth and efficiency in feed utilization. When crossed with other breeds, they produce pigs of highly acceptable carcass quality. They are however, weak on the feet and legs and have problems adapting to rugged conditions. Such defects should be corrected by proper selection and breeding.
Yorkshires are entirely white with medium, erect ears. Sows have superior mothering ability, farrow and wean large litters and are excellent milkers. They adapt well to confinement but not to rugged conditions.
Slaughter animals yield a high dressing percentage, produce fine quality meat and compare favorably with other breeds in growth and economy of grains.
Berkshires are black with six white points – four white feet, some white in the face and tail. The ears are erect and inclined forward as the animal grows older. They are known for their style, meatiness and good adaptability to rugged conditions. They have desirable length in converting feed to weigh gain. The sows are not as prolific as the other breeds.
Hampshire are black with a white belt around the shoulder and body. They are generally short legged and lack body thickness. The sows have a reputation of weaning a high percentage of pigs farrowed and are able to adapt to very rugged conditions. The growth rate, however, has generally been average or below.
The Duroc color is of varying shades of red. The sows are prolific and are good mothers. They produce pigs that are superior in growth rate, feed conversion, and their performance under rugged conditions is better than any of the white breeds.
The Pietrain is a very meaty type of pig with spotted black and white color. It has well-shaped hams, loin and shoulders. Ears are erect. The carcass has a high lean meat percentage, but it has a poor body constitution. Feed efficiency is not really good and they are a little bit slow grower. This breed is also highly susceptible to stress. Thus, Pietrain is only worthwhile in crosses but not as purebreds.
Most gilts of the improved breeds reach the age of puberty at about six to eight months of age but they should not be bred until they are eight months of age or are weighing about 90 to 100 kg.
Generally, boars should be four to six months old at the time of selection. Whatever systems of operation, hog houses must be constructed properly to ensure maximum performance of the pigs. A good hog house may not improve the health conditions of the animals but a poor one will certainly increase disease problem easily.
|For a small or backyard operations, cheap and locally available materials may be used such as bamboo and nipa.|
|Hog houses should be constructed on a slightly sloping and well-drained area so that it will not become too muddy and convenient to work in.|
|Permanent hog houses should have concrete floors for easy cleaning and to minimize the occurrence of parasites and diseases. Concrete floors must not be too rough to cause foot and leg problems nor too smooth to be slippery when wet.|
When selecting breeder sows on the basis of physical appearance, consider the following:
- The gilt should have well developed udder with a minimum of six pairs of properly spaced function teats. A sow with poor udder development is likely to have a poor milking capacity;
- Choose those which do not have inverted teats such teats are inherited and do not secrete milk;
- A long body is more desirably in sows because it provides more space for udder development;
- The body should have a uniform width from front to rear;
- Good development of the ham. Loin and shoulder is required of a breeding animal;
- Must have a sound and well placed feet and legs. Animals with medium short feet and short upright pasterns are preferable;
- Make it a point to select the biggest animals within a litter;
- Female breeders should come from a litter of eight or more good-sized piglets with high survivability;
- Do not keep the gilts that come from sows in which agalactia (failure to secrete milk) have been observed;
- Select vigorous and hardy pigs from a healthy litter in a herd raised under good swine sanitation. Do not keep gilts or boars from litters that have physical abnormalities. This may be inherited
Most of the factors discussed in connection with a selection of gilt or sow also apply in the selection of a boar. However the following pointers should also be considered:
- Masculinity, both in appearance and action, should predominate in the make-up of any boar;
- The primary sex organs should be clearly visible and be well-developed. Select only those boars whose testicles are of equal size;
- Select however, the best is to select a boar which has been proven and tested for boars with traits that can overcome the defects of the herd. Minor defects in the boar may be ignored provided that they are not presenting among the sows;
- If the milk supply of the sow is inadequate to feed her piglets, supplement her with a good creep ration. Use a milk replacer. Choose many available brands.
- Begin feeding a commercial good pre-starter ration when the pigs are about one week of age.
- The ration of the pigs should be changed at different stages of growth but the shift from one ration to another should be done gradually in order not to upset the normal feeding behavior of the pigs. Always allow a transition period of at least one week before making changes
to be continued..