The rearing phase is one of the most important phases in a sow’s life, so all the environmental factors have to be just right. Light is a very important factor in stimulating the young gilts.
Stimulating gilts through light is important for proper sexual maturation, but the social aspects are equally important. When gilts are socialised correctly, this will have benefits in the future. In addition, good lighting improves the gilts’ vision which prevents them from being startled. This is beneficial during gestation and farrowing in particular.
Gilts are usually housed in groups, which may be large or small groups with different feeding systems. In group housing systems, socialisation is very important. This is especially so when sows are group housed during gestation. However, proper socialisation is also important if they are housed in individual crates during the gestation phase. Good lighting will contribute to socialisation.