Brumm Speaks Out: Summer heat has arrived

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Summer heat arrived this weekend in the upper Midwest. Relatively high dew point temperatures (67 degrees F dew point at 8:30 am as I write this) mean pigs are having trouble dissipating heat. I continue to walk wean-finish and grow-finish sites that have either no water system installed or incorrectly installed or programmed mister systems.

In general I set controllers to turn on cooling water lines at 18 degrees F above set point (assumes 62 degrees F or lower set point in late finishing) in curtain sided barns and 20 degrees F in tunnel barns. Many producers still wait until temperatures are above 85 degrees F before providing water for heat relief. This is too late to begin assisting the growing pig with cooling as evidence suggests feed intake is reduced at temperatures above 77 degrees F for 136-pound pigs on partial slats.

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