BPEX blog

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Pregnancy scanning – some practical tips


Pig producers had a look inside the sow’s reproductive tract and then picked up their scanner to practice pregnancy diagnosis at a workshop in the South West.

Fran Baird from The George Vet Group showed the group what the reproductive tract looks like, including where semen is deposited, where eggs are released and where embryos develop.
He highlighted some problem areas to look out for, including the negative impact of stress on ovulation. Fran said that 21-day returns could be caused by serving sows when not on heat, poor semen handling or poor uterine environment. The group also learned that failure to farrow could be caused by bad scanning technique, pseudo pregnancy or infection.

Nigel Bennett of Schippers then gave guidance on pregnancy scanning and trainees practiced on their sows. Think of the scanner as a torch, he said, and shine the beam through the area you want to scan. Producers should place the scanner on the second teat from the back and avoid the bladder, as the bladder and foetuses both show up as small black objects. Plus, it’s important use scanning gel with the scanner, not water, and keep the equipment clean. Aim to scan at four weeks to get the best picture.

Click here for the pictures…

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