The effect of feeding schedule on ammonia emission from housing,systems for sows was studied. The hypothesis was that changing the feeding schedule would change the diurnal pattern of the ammonia emission and that daytime feeding would cause more ammonia to be emitted from the manure compared to evening feeding. The experimental units were an individual housing system with 64 dry sows in stalls (system A) and two group-housing systems: system B with 62 dry sows and feeding stalls and system C with 65 dry sows and electronic sow feeders (ESFs). In systems A and 13, the sows were fed simultaneously twice daily. In system C, the sows were fed sequentially once a day. During feeding schedule 1, feeding times in systems A and B were 7:30 and 15:30 h, in system C feed was available from 15:30 h on. During schedule 2, feeding times in systems A and B were 7:30 and 21:30 h, in system C food was available from 7:30 h on. Ammonia emission, indoor temperature and animal activity were measured and the data were analysed considering autocorrelations with a time-series model. The values for the coefficients of determinations R-2 of the models explaining ammonia emission by indoor temperature and animal activity were 48% for system A, 66% for system B and 64% for system C. In all three systems, the diurnal patterns of the indoor temperature, animal activity and ammonia emission changed considerably with the feeding schedule. Average ammonia emissions per sow for feeding schedules 1 and 2 were, respectively, 0.71 and 0.68 g h(-1) (probability P = 0.23) from system A, 0.60 and 0.61 g h(-1) (P = 0.75) from system B and 0.69 and 0.76 g h(-1) (P <0.01) from system C. It can be concluded that changing the feeding schedule alters the diurnal pattern of the ammonia emission, but if the animals are fed simultaneously, changing the feeding time does not affect the total amount of ammonia emitted. However, with the animals fed sequentially, the ammonia emission falls by 10% if the feeding starts in the afternoon instead of in the morning. (C) 2003 Silsoe Research Institute. All rights reserved. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd.
- growing pigs