Complete guide to pig production and management

Pig production is a lucrative economic venture that can be practised by a number of livestock farmers at the farm level.

The sow has a short gestation period and farrows several young ones at a go. When properly managed, pig production can improve the economic, social and health status of farmers.

Production

To start production/rearing of pigs you need the following to construct your pigsty
Iron sheet/roofing grass (thatching grass)

  • Wood (boards and scantlings)
  • Bamboo
  • Concrete (expensive but durable), bricks
  • Local mud fortified with cement
  • Combination of any of the above

Floor space for sty construction

Adult———————— 15-20sq.ft

Growing/fishing———- 5-10sq.ft

Weaner——————— 4sq.ft

Feeding

The success of any pig enterprise depends first and foremost on the feeding of stock with a well-balanced diet.

The nutritional needs of pigs in the various phases of their life cycle vary, hence to achieve the maximum benefits of fast growth and efficient feed conversation, there is the need to meet the feed requirement of the critical stages.

Ration for pigs

 Type of ingredient
Class of pigMaize (kg)Fish meal (kg)Soybean meal (kg)Wheat bran (kg)
Weaners488735
Growers457640
Mature pigs405548

For all classes- shell grit -1kg

Salt             0.5kg

Premix       0.5kg

Daily intake (kg) – piglets 0.5; weaners 1.5; growers 2.5; boars& dry sows 3.0; pregnant sows 4.5; lactating sows 5.0

Feed Resources

Energy sourceMaize, cassava, guinea corn, maize bran, rice bran, pito mash, yam, cassava and plantain peels, corn cobs, groundnut skin, cocoa pod husk
Protein sourceFish meal, groundnut cake, copra cake, cottonseed cake, soybean meal, groundnuts, brewers spent grain, palm kernel meal, cassava leaf meal
Mineral sourceCommon salt, bone meal, dicalcium phosphate, oyster shell
Vitamin sourceCommercial vitamins, supplements fish meal, green forages and yellow maize

Reproduction

  • Gestation period -3 months 3 weeks 3 days (114days)
  • Weaning-6 weeks
  • Maturity (sexuality) -6 months, gilts should be mated at 8-9 months of age i.e. 2nd or 3rd heat period
  • Reproduction rate – 2 times in a year
  • Average litter size -8
  • Heat period (when the female will allow mating) 21 days cycle
  • After weaning, the sow comes on the 4th and 14th day

Husbandry Practices

  • Observe pigs carefully for ill-health daily
  • Clean pigsty with water every morning
  • Give adequate clean water morning and afternoon
  • Castrate unwanted males between the ages of 1-3 weeks of birth or soon after weaning
  • Administer iron dextran to newborn piglets within the first 3 days (dosage is 2 cc/piglet)
  • Clip needle teeth of piglets within first 3 days of birth
  • Deworm mature boars 3 time/year, growing pigs 3 times i.e. once during each phase of the life cycle (starting, growing and finishing), pregnant sows 10 days before the farrowing date and lactating sows, before or soon after weaning.

Source: Pig Production (mofa.gov.gh)

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