Pigs like it hot, but not too hot. (Update).
The majority of pigs in Europe and North America spend their entire lifetime indoors. To supply the animals with fresh air and thermal comfort, the room in which they live is provided with a ventilation and heating system.
The climate around the pigs, the Animal Occupied Zone (AOZ), needs to meet the animals' demands. Pigs kept in a too hot or too cold AOZ have reduced welfare and performance. It is in the interest of the pigs and the farmer to optimize the climate in the AOZ.
The climate in the AOZ is importantly determined by the ventilation system used in the pig room. In traditional systems, air comes into the room through the ceiling or the sidewalls. Fresh air has to travel a long way before it reaches the animals, and some of the fresh air leaves the room without reaching them. Experiments show that the climate in the AOZ is not homogeneous; in some pens it is too cold and in other pens too warm.
The Research Institute for Animal Husbandry in the Netherlands has developed a new ventilation system for pig rooms. In rooms with the new ventilation system, fresh air flows through underground air channels and enters the room close to the animals with very low air velocities. The result is n good fresh air supply in the AOZ, effective ventilation, and energy savings. The climate in all pens is equal, and controlling the climate in the AOZ is improved.
The effect of this ventilation system on animal behavior and animal performance is currently being studied.
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|Title Annotation:||research into the design of the Animal Occupied Zone (AOZ)|
|Publication:||Resource: Engineering & Technology for a Sustainable World|
|Article Type:||Brief Article|
|Date:||May 1, 2003|
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