Ashlee McEvoy ASAP/ASAS 2017 Communications Intern
The University of Adelaide, Roseworthy campus was mentioned a couple of times during the American Dairy Science Association and American Society of Animal Science Midwest meeting this month in Omaha, Nebraska, United States of America.
Two students presented oral presentations, “Piglet creching decreases protein content in colostrum” presented by Yanisse Montano, and “Influence of seminal additives on sow fertility” presented Tivon Brown.
The first presentation by Montano involved observing the amount of colostrum that in newborn piglets intake in the first 24 hours of life before gut epithelial closure takes place. Montano first discussed how it has previously been hypothesised that the order of farrowing may have an effect on suckling, meaning that the first-born piglets were more likely to ingest more colostrum than those later born. The objective of the study was to assess if creching, the process of placing piglets into a warm box at birth to prevent suckling, before returning all piglets to the sow at the end of the farrowing process, increased the total plasma protein levels at 24 hours post farrowing in the final 3 piglets born in each litter. It was also investigated if this increase was associated with higher milk protein synthesis in the mammary gland. This study was completed at the University of Adelaide at the Roseworthy piggery facilities. A total of 28 litters were withheld from suckling for 4 hours after first piglet, and 28 litters were allowed to immediately. Blood was collected at 24 hours post farrowing in the first and then last three piglets of each litter and colostrum samples were taken from the front, middle and rear glands of all sows immediately after birth of first piglet, and again 3 hours after.
The findings of this study showed that the total plasma protein levels at 24 hours did not differ in the piglets born first and last, but the total plasma protein levels were significantly higher in the piglets that were not creched. There was also no differences in total protein content in colostrum when sampled immediately after farrowing, however it tended to decrease in sows with creched litters than the control sows.
The second presentation by Brown looked at determining the effect of four different seminal additives on pregnancy, farrowing rates and litter size in primiparous and multiparous sows. This study was however performed in Spain.
The study was split into 5 groups, control, 87 µg of cloprostenol, 5 IU oxytocin, 0.2 µg buserelin acetate and 5 IU oxytocin + 0.2 µg buserelin acetates. The results however showed no differences in pregnancy and farrowing rates, and all seminal additives increased in the total piglets born and the total piglets born live.
Overall, The University of Adelaide, in particular Roy Kirkwood, was heavily involved in Montano’s presentation, in both the study, results and assistance of writing the abstract. The second presentation the universities lecturers and researchers Roy Kirkwood and Kiro Petroski were both involved in the construction of the abstract.