Evaluation of Sow Body Development Throughout the Reproduction Cycle and Its Influence on Reproductive Performance in the Danube White Breed

Agricultural Institute, 3 Simeon Veliki Blvd., BG - 9700 Shumen, Bulgaria


APOSTOLOV, A., R. NEDEVA, M. BOJKOVA, Y. MARCHEV and P. PENCHEV, 2016. Evaluation of sow body development throughout the reproduction cycle and its influence on reproductive performance in the danube white breed. Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 22: 144–150

The dynamics of body development have been estimated in 757 Danube White sows in four periods of their reproduction cycle: at 90 kg of live weight; at mating; at 30-day gestation; and at 110-day gestation. Subject of control were the sow productivity traits: live weight; backfat thickness at points X1 and X2; depth of m. longisimus dorsi; and lean meat percentage. Subject of analysis were the reproductive ability of sows from first to seventh and more litters. The controlled sow’s reproduction traits were litter size at birth and at 21-st day, as well litter weight at birth and at 21-st day. The results representing reproduction capacity in relation to body development during gestation indicated that the sows with thicker backfat have litters with larger size (P ≤ 0.001) and weight (P≤0.01) at farrowing. Maintaining backfat of appropriate and constant thickness (18-20 mm) throughout the reproduction cycle of the Danube White sows is more essential for their reproductive efficiency and welfare than controlling it by standard testing or at the time of mating.

Key words: sow, backfat, weight, born alive, litter weght

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