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Table 3 Effect betaine fed during lactation on sow and litter performance during the summer months (Exp. 1)a

From: Sow performance in response to natural betaine fed during lactation and post-weaning during summer and non-summer months

 Parity 1 and 2Parity 3+SEMP-valuesb
Betaine, %
Item00.200.2BetaineParity group
Sows, n159163165162   
BW at placement, kgc246.4247.2278.9280.92.1430.443< 0.001
BW at farrowing, kgd227.1227.3257.7257.51.9660.983< 0.001
BW at day 21, kg209.1206.2251.8249.21.8980.148< 0.001
BW change, kg−18.0−21.0− 5.9−8.21.3990.024< 0.001
Sow BW gain, kg/d−0.856−1.002−0.283−0.3910.0670.024< 0.001
Lactation length, d22.1022.0922.1622.220.1010.7480.245
Feed intake, kg/d3.6873.4144.8734.8230.0940.052< 0.001
Sow gain:feede0.4280.3880.4750.4640.0220.2240.004
Litter weight after cross-fostering, kgf17.9018.1418.4518.760.2250.1640.004
Litter weight on day 21, kg68.967.271.572.00.8790.431< 0.001
Litter gain, kg52.751.154.855.20.7270.350< 0.001
Pigs weaned per litter11.0210.9410.9210.900.0970.5350.432
Piglet mortality, %8.088.738.929.150.8040.5480.385
No-value pigs, %g2.301.812.121.380.3700.0710.368
  1. aValues represent least squares means of n sows for sow and litter performance. The experiment was conducted from June to September
  2. bThe statistical analysis tested for main effects of betaine supplementation, parity group and their interaction. Group of placement (1 to 28) was used as random effect. No significant interactions between parity group and betaine supplementation were detected (P ≥ 0.13)
  3. cSow body weight (BW) was measured prior to sows entering the farrowing room (109 ± 1 day of gestation)
  4. dSow BW after farrowing was calculated using equations of Walker and Young [20]
  5. eSow gain:feed was calculated as sow BW gain or loss plus total litter gain divided by total feed intake during lactation
  6. fLitters were standardized to 12 pigs per litter
  7. gNo value pigs consisted of pigs weighing less than 3.62 kg at day 21 of lactation