Novel Supplemental Heat Source Evaluation for Swine Farrowing Stalls

  • Brett Ramirez orcid logo (Iowa State University)
  • Benjamin Smith (Iowa State University)


The objectives of this study were to compare the production impact and energy usage between of a novel supplemental heat source (NSHS) and a conventional heat lamp (HL) in swine farrowing stalls. The NSHS evaluated has a parabolic shaped cover (provides heat to two creep areas) with clear curtains and an infrared heat source with proportional heat output control. Six farrowing turns in two farrowing rooms (24 farrowing stalls per room) were utilized in this study. The six NSHS (12 stall coverage) were randomly assigned to a farrowing stall for the duration of the study and HL assigned to the other 12 stalls. Piglets were weighed at 3 days and at 18 days of lactation using a litter scale and pre-weaning mortality was tracked using farm records. Energy usage was monitored using current sensors on each NSHS and HL energy was verified using a power meter. Data were collected on 113 NSHS and 101 HL litters and analyzed using a Mixed model in JMP 14. There was no statistical difference between the two treatments on ADG P>0.10, there was a tendency for significance for pre-wean mortality P=0.08; NSHS 9.67% (SE=0.82) and HL 12.04% (SE 0.87); and a significant difference was noted in the laid-on mortalities P< 0.05; NSHS 4.05% and HL 6.04%. There was a significant difference, P< 0.01, in the energy usage (NSHS 3.25 kWh d-1, HL6 kWh d-1). Overall the NSHS had a tendency to reduce pre-wean mortality with a significant reduction in laid-on mortalities and reduce energy usage, though no impact was noted on ADG of the piglets. 

Keywords: energy usage, environment, piglet, heat lamp, pre-weaning mortality

How to Cite:

Ramirez, B. & Smith, B., (2021) “Novel Supplemental Heat Source Evaluation for Swine Farrowing Stalls”, Iowa State University Animal Industry Report 17(1). doi: https://doi.org/10.31274/air.11792

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Published on
13 Oct 2021
Peer Reviewed