Adequate facility maintenance and management is essential in reducing overall manure production. That’s especially true when it comes to adjusting waterers and feeders.
When feed and water drop into your pits without having ever passed through a hog, it not only increases costs and inefficiency, it adds to manure-pit waste and odors.
Here are some management tips from the Iowa Pork Producers Association to help keep the problem in check:
1. Control waste by calibrating feeders and checking waterers frequently. It’s important to do these with all ages of pigs.
2. Match feed consumption levels to the stage of production.
3. Assure appropriate feed presentation with proper alignment and placement of feeding equipment.
4. Use pelleted feed or make sure grind size is appropriate for the animal size. It can make a big difference in optimizing consumption, digestion levels and minimizing waste.
5. Take advantage of approved feed additives, such as enzymes, like phytase, that increase nutrient absorption and reduce feed waste.
6. Monitor feed consumption to identify patterns of excessive consumption — this can provide an early signal of feed being wasted.
7. Make sure that rations are properly formulated in terms of protein and amino-acid levels for the stage of animal production.
8. Do not overcrowd animals. Proper animal-density practices help assure adequate feed consumption and efficiencies.
9. Clean pens and pits on a regular schedule to assure animal well-being and comfort, which keeps pigs eating properly.