Effect of rooting area and drinker in the outdoor run on behaviour and Ascaris infection of organic pigs

H.M. Vermeer, F.H.M. Borgsteede, C.P.H. Gaasenbeek, H. Altena

Research output: Book/ReportReportProfessional


Hygiene is often a problem on the outdoor runs of growing organic pigs. Manure and urine are mainly excreted outside, but spread all over the run. Reducing the dirty surface may improve well being, reduce ammonia emission, improve hygiene and reduce labour and parasite infections. The presence of a rooting area and of a drinker on the outdoor run were tested in a 2x2 factorial design. The pens with the rooting areas had a higher number of pigs on the outdoor run than the pens without a rooting area (1.6 vs 1.2 pigs). This was caused by more pigs in area 2 and 3. At higher temperatures there were more pigs outside, except in the rooting area: this was popular at all temperatures. A rooting area resulted in a cleaner outdoor area, however in some cases the root-ing area became a dunging area. An extra outdoor drinker leads to a cleaner area around the drinker, but to a dirtier indoor area. No difference in Ascaris infection was found between the four treatment combinations.
Original languageDutch
Place of Publication[S.l.]
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • pig farming
  • pigs
  • organic farming
  • animal welfare

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