Leonard, S., Xin, H., Brown-Brandl, T. et al. 2020. Effects of farrowing stall layout and number of heat lamps on sow and piglet production performance. Animals 10(2), 348.
Most farrowing facilities in the United States use stalls and heat lamps to improve sow and piglet productivity. This study investigated these factors by comparing production outcomes for three different farrowing stall layouts (traditional, expanded creep area, expanded sow area) and use of one or two heat lamps. Data were collected on 427 sows and their litters over one year. Results showed no statistical differences due to experimental treatment for any of the production metrics recorded, excluding percent stillborn. Parity one sows had fewer piglets born alive (p < 0.001), lower percent mortality (p = 0.001) and over-lay (p = 0.003), and a greater number of piglets weaned (p < 0.001) with lower average daily weight gain (ADG) (p < 0.001) and more uniform litters (p = 0.001) as compared to higher parity sows. Farrowing turn, associated with group/seasonal changes, had a significant impact on most of the production metrics measured. Number of piglets born influenced the percent stillborn (p < 0.001). Adjusted litter size had a significant impact on percent mortality (p < 0.001), percent over-lay (p < 0.001), and number of piglets weaned (p < 0.001). As the number of piglets weaned per litter increased, both piglet ADG and litter uniformity decreased (p < 0.001). This information can be used to guide producers in farrowing facility design.