Management greatly influences a sow’s performance. The light climate is one of the most important management aspects. Light can improve performances in the farrowing house.
Better fertility for the next gestation and a higher weight gain by the piglets before weaning are just two examples. Light also stimulates the pigs’ biological clock and biorhythm, which ultimately contributes to their welfare and performance.
The light climate will maximally contribute to animal welfare and performance when it is adjusted to suit the type of housing equipment. In today’s pig husbandry systems there are increasing numbers of ways to house sows and their piglets in the farrowing house. Most sows are housed in traditional pens, but there are also several different free farrowing systems on the market. Each housing system needs a specific type of lighting to optimise the light climate.
Traditional farrowing house
Traditional systems in the farrowing house have specific lighting requirements. Sows will perform better if they are housed in the correct light climate.
Free farrowing systems
In a growing number of countries, the use of free farrowing systems is emerging as a way of enhancing animal welfare. Free farrowing systems have different needs with regard to lighting than traditional farrowing houses.