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Table 7 Effect of betaine fed during lactation on sow and litter performance during non-summer months (Exp. 2)a

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

ItemParity 1 and 2Parity 3+SEMP-valuesb
Betaine, %
00.200.2BetaineParity group
Sows, n150150163164   
BW at placement, kgc225.8223.6276.7275.72.3370.469< 0.001
BW at farrowing, kgd206.4204.5252.3252.42.2890.666< 0.001
BW at day 21, kg199.5196.5255.0254.22.2450.348< 0.001
BW change, kg−7.1−< 0.001
Sow BW gain, kg/d−0.340−0.3760.0960.0870.0680.698< 0.001
Lactation length, d22.9623.1823.1623.270.1130.0750.110
Feed intake, kg/d4.314.245.615.470.1010.155< 0.001
Sow gain:feede0.4120.4010.4440.4860.0150.203< 0.001
Litters, nf81849394   
Litter weight after cross-fostering, kgg17.2117.1019.4019.290.2870.687< 0.001
Litter weight on day 21, kg62.060.769.669.91.3040.699< 0.001
Litter gain, kg45.343.650.250.71.2530.622< 0.001
Pigs weaned per litter10.7910.7610.7810.720.1000.6870.816
Piglet mortality, %10.1010.2710.1410.620.8370.7040.816
No-value pigs, %h6.125.173.854.400.9970.8290.104
  1. aValues represent least squares means of n sows. This Experiment was conducted from February to June
  2. bThe statistical analysis tested for main effects of betaine supplementation, parity group and their interactions. Group of placement (1 to 28) was used as the random effect. No significant interactions were detected (P ≥ 0.21)
  3. cSow body weight (BW) was measured prior to entering the farrowing room (112 ± 2 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. fA subset of 352 sows was used to measure litter performance (group 1 to 16). Data were collected from February to April
  7. gLitters were standardized to 12 pigs per litter
  8. hNo value pigs consisted of pigs weighing less than 3.62 kg at day 21 of lactation