#JustAsk #3 - Improving your litter performance with electrical heating

12 March 2021Time: 3 minutes

The environment in your barn has a big influence on your litter performance. To ensure all newborn piglets of a good start in life, they need a climate of 32 degrees Celsius. However, for sows a climate of 18 degrees Celsius results in an optimum feed intake and recovery for the next farrowing period. How do you balance both temperatures so that the sow as well as the piglets stay vital to maximize your litter performance? Join our #JustAsk with heating expert Pedro Abadias of Lamapor on March 25 at 2 p.m. CET!

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Improving your litter performance with macro- and microclimates

To cater to the needs of the sow and piglets, Vereijken believes in creating a macro- and microclimate. This means that you lower your barn temperature to 18 degrees for the sow, while creating an area of 32 degrees with local heating for your piglets. This method results in three benefits:

  • Lower piglet mortality

Since piglets are drawn to the warmer area after suckling, this way of working reduces the chances of piglets being crushed by the sow. 

  • Maximum feed intake for the sow

A cooler climate for the sow encourages her to eat more, which helps her to recover for the next farrowing period. 

  • Lower costs and environmental impact

Because you can lower the overall temperature in your barn and are working with a smaller heated area, you are saving energy.

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How do you create an effective microclimate?

You can create a microclimate in different ways, but when searching for which way works best for your farm, you do need to pay attention to two aspects:

  1. Is warmth distributed equally in your microclimate?
    If warmth is not distributed equally, you risk leaving a piglet behind. Make sure that your heat source distributes warmth equally so that all piglets get the best start. 
  2. Low investments vs. ongoing costs
    A lamp is the easiest way to get started as the investment costs are low, but it also distributes warmth less equally and lets warmth escape before it reaches your piglets. This increases energy costs as well as the risk of less vital piglets. Additionally, a lamp needs to be replaced more often than other products such as electrical heating plates or waterbeds. So, when you have decided to work with macro- and microclimates, look at the bigger picture of energy savings and warmth distribution instead of investment costs alone. Your investment will earn itself back. 

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What about electrical heating?

Electrical heating can be the solution to all mentioned topics. When reading this, you probably have some questions about how electrical heating could work for your farm. After all, no two farms are the same. 

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In March 25 at 2 p.m. CET, Pedro from Lamapor can answer all of your questions regarding electrical heating. Do you want to know how Lamapor’s heat pads of polymer concrete and stainless-steel tackle challenges in creating a microclimate? Are you curious about when to use electric heating and when to use waterbeds?

If so, sign up for our 30-minute #JustAsk session on electrical heating on March 25 at 2 p.m. CET and ask your questions directly to Pedro! 

Previously sent in questions via the comments below the Facebook or LinkedIn post on social media will be answered first. Feel free to send them in today! 

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