There are important criteria that are needed to be considered when you want to start with Foundation stocks which are; Source, Selection and Stocking.
Sourcing: Foundation stocks should be purchased from a good reputable farm of proven integrity.
Consequence of sourcing from unreputable farm could include:
- Disease outbreak.
- Poor growth.
- Poor reproductive performance.
- Increased cost of production
- Inaccurate record.
How To recognize a good pig farm:
Information: Information from people around the farm, through electronic and print media could assist the intending farmer to recognize good pig farm.
Visit: On farm assessment by the intending farmer is also good for assessment.
Record: One can recognize good farm by asking for the record of performace, number of stock starting with, present stock, disease outbreak, etc.
Sources of foundation stocks:
- Reputable pig farmer(s).
- Government Institution (Agricultural Institutions).
- Non-Governmental Organization (Leventis Foundation, etc.).
Selection: Good selection of foundation stock will reduce cost of production in terms of disease management and enhance better growth and reproductive performances.
Criteria for selection:
i.) Aims or Goals: The aims of the farmer for setting up pig farm will determine the selection i.e. fattening or breeding purposes.
ii.) Health Status: Pig(s) to be selected must be in state of good health. It must be disease-free and not deformed.
iii.) Activeness: The animal must be active and alert. The appearance must not be dull.
iv.) Record: The record of performance of the ‘parents’ must be known, i.e.
– Litter size
– Mothering ability
v.) Soundness of the feet and legs, strength on top and ability to walk.
vi.) Good conformation: The pig to be selected must be good conformation.
viii.) Age: Old pigs should not be selected for breeding purpose. The older the pig, the lesser the performance.
ix.) Breed: Good breed with desirable traits should be selected for breeding purpose.
x.) Rate of weight gain: efficiency of feed utilization also plays important factor in selecting pigs.Pig(s)
to be selected must have good ability to convert feed into edible meat.
Transportation of purchased pigs to the Farm:
- Make proper arrangement before transporting new stock to the farm.
- Do not transport pigs inside the boot.
- Transport the pig early in the morning or late in the evening to reduce heat stress.
- Transport pigs in well ventilated compartment.
- Handle pigs with care.
- Start the pigs with food they are very familiar with and do not introduce new feed.
Arrival of Pigs on the Farm:
- Provide clean water with anti-stess multivitamins to the pig.
- Quality feed must be available before the arrival and feed the pig 2 or 3 days with the feed being given in the former farm for proper acclimatization.
- Antibiotics such as terramycin could be given in the first 3 days of arrival to combat any incubating bacterial diseases.
- Deworm the pig during the first 2 weeks on the farm.
- Closely monitor the performace during the acclimation period.
- Group the pigs according to their size or ages.
- Properstocking density must be adhered to.
- Stock the pigs eailyh in the morning or late in the evening.
- Call the attention of the experts if there is any change in the behaviour of the animal is noticed.