Selection for indirect genetic effects (IGE), i.e. the genetic effect of an individual on a trait of another individual, is a promising avenue to increase trait values in plant and animal breeding. Studies in livestock suggest that selection for IGE for growth (IGEg) might increase animals’ capacity to tolerate stress. We assessed the effect of a stressful phase (weaning) on the behaviour and performance of pigs (n = 480) divergently selected for high or low IGEg. High IGEg pigs were significantly slower to explore the feed and gained less weight than low IGEg pigs in the days after weaning. In line with previous findings, high IGEg animals may have prioritized the formation of social ranks.
- Indirect genetic effects