Effects of extra feeding during mid-pregnancy on gilts productive and reproductive performance

A. Cerisuelo, R. Sala, J. Gasa, D. Carrión, J. Coma, Nuria Chapinal Gomez, Maria Dolores Baucells Sanchez

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13 Citations (Scopus)


The effects of a supplemental feeding strategy during mid-gestation on lean gilts body reserves, productive and reproductive performance were assessed. A total of 90 gilts were allocated into two treatments (Control, C, and Supplemented, S). Control sows (n = 43) were fed according to the level routinely used on farm (2.5-3.0 kg d-1, 2.9 Mcal metabolizable energy kg-1 feed and 0.6% of lysine) throughout gestation, and S sows (n = 47) received 50% more feed from day 45 to day 85 of gestation. Body weight (BW) and sows body condition [backfat (BF), loin depth and body condition score] were recorded on days 40 and 80 of gestation, at farrowing and at weaning. Litter performance at birth and on day 18 ±1 of lactation was registered at first and second parities. Although no differences in backfat levels were found at weaning, a higher proportion of S sows stayed within the target backfat interval both at farrowing (17-21 mm) and at weaning (> 14 mm). No differences were found in BW and body reserves losses during lactation between treatment groups. Litter weight at birth tended to be higher in the S group of sows, consistently, in the first and second parities (P < 0.10), compared to the C group. Thus, providing an extra feed allowance during mid-gestation has beneficial effects on gilts' body fat reserves at weaning (higher proportion of sows in the optimum BF interval) and slight advantages on productive output, although probably not high enough to justify the extra feed wastage.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-229
JournalSpanish Journal of Agricultural Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008


  • Backfat
  • Gilt performance
  • Loin depth
  • Maternal nutrition


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