BPEX blog

Thursday, 30 May 2013

First Stockman Plus course concludes

Well done to all in the BPEX Stockman Plus (North) training group who gave fantastic presentations about their farms yesterday.

It was the final session of the course and a chance for everyone to celebrate their achievements on farm since they began the course last autumn.

Additional congratulations go to Louise Dorward, pictured with BPEX knowledge transfer manager Steve Winfield, who presented her with the course’s Student of the Year award - for her great enthusiasm and contribution to the group’s discussions throughout.

Friday, 17 May 2013

Keep sow body condition stable

It is important to assess sow body condition accurately to ensure that appropriate nutrition is provided to each sow for maintenance, growth, reproduction and lactation.

There should be minimal variation in condition throughout a sow’s productive life and producers should aim for an optimal average condition score of 3 (on a scale of 1 to 5) throughout the breeding herd.

Score sows at key times in the reproductive cycle and always score the sows by touch, using the palm of the hand as it is more accurate than just scoring ‘by eye’. Consider the shoulders, ribs, backbone and hips, not just one location.

For more information on the Breed+3 initiative and to download the factsheet,
Action for Productivity 20: Condition scoring of sows, go to: www.bpex.org.uk/2TS/breeding/. 

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Stockman North group tackles ventilation

The latest stockman session began with basic finisher pig care, with the group discussing daily checks, feed management and stockmanship.

The second half of the session was about ventilation – a hugely important topic as poor ventilation on pig farms can be a key barrier to improving pig health and productivity.

The group talked about all types of ventilation and the building types each of them has on farm with ventilation consultant John Chambers. It was a lively discussion!

The next session of Stockman North will be the Abattoir visit on Wednesday 12th June.
To find out more from John Chambers, check out this video