Longevity, Lifetime Pig Production and Productivity, and Age at First Conception in a Cohort of Gilts Observed over Six Years on Commercial Farms
Journal of Veterinary Medical Science
An observational cohort study was conducted using a producer group of 33 farms selected based on their completeness of reproduction data, including dates of birth, entry to a herd, and removal. Average lifetime pig production and parity at removal in a cohort of 2,265 females born in 1990 were 67.2 pigs born alive and 5.6 parities, respectively. Approximately 90% of farrowings occurred from the second through the fourth year from birth. Farrowing rates between parities of 2 and 4 were higher
... nd 4 were higher than other parities, and pigs born alive from parities 3 to 5 were the greatest among parities. The 10th and 90th percentiles of age at first conception were 227 and 322 days. Increasing the age at first mating was associated with low farrowing rate (P< 0.01) in parity 0. Older age at first conception was associated with lower parity at removal, shorter reproductive herd life, and fewer lifetime pigs born alive (P< 0.01). Of the 2,265 breeding females, 253 (11.2%) were re-mated at parity 0 and farrowed. These sows with a record re-mating at parity 0 had lower parity at removal, less lifetime pig production and lower lifetime productivity than those with no re-mating at parity 0 (P<0.01). It is recommended that unbred gilts 230 days of age or older should be mated soon.-KEY WORDS: culling, farrowing rate, longevity, productivity, sow.