Pork producers and industry professionals have expressed the need to decrease pre-weaning mortality rates in piglets, and University of Minnesota researchers are uniquely poised to take on the challenge. While feeding zinc supplementation during a sow’s gestation period has shown to influence pig performance after birth, this new research project aims to determine the timing and duration of zinc that may influence “fetal imprinting” to optimize health and performance.
Minnesota is making quite a name for itself in the renewable energy field as it relates to sustainable farming, and the WCROC is at the cutting edge of developing and improving renewable systems for agriculture production.
Organic dairy farmers will soon have additional resources for improving management strategies from the University of Minnesota (U of MN) certified organic dairy program located at the West Central Research and Outreach Center (WCROC), Morris, MN. Dr. Bradley Heins, Associate Professor of Dairy Science at the WCROC, was recently awarded three grants totaling $2.1 million through the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture to further research in the areas of disbudding alternatives for organic dairy calves, pre-weaned calf rearing options, and the effect of high-legume diets on milk quality.
About 250 crossbred dairy cows graze on grasses and cover crops at the WCROC. But the cows don't eat everything, and the weeds left behind will spread unless cut. That's when the cowbot goes to work.
Tail biting is a behavioral problem that involves both biters and victimized pigs. The biters are triggered by things such as genetics, physiology, or insufficient housing, nutrition or environmental enrichment needs. Yuzhi Li, Associate Professor of Swine Behavior, offers 3 tips for preventing tail biting.