Animal Production Science Animal Production Science Society
Food, fibre and pharmaceuticals from animals
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Effect of duration of altrenogest treatment on farrowing rate and litter size of gilts

F. De Rensis A D , C. Mazzoni B , R. Saleri A , A. Scollo B , K. J. Plush C and R. N. Kirkwood C
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Department of Veterinary Medical Science, University of Parma, 43121 Parma, Italy.

B Suivet, Via Abbazia, 11, 42012 Reggio Emilia, Italy.

C School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, University of Adelaide, Roseworthy, SA 5371, Australia.

D Corresponding author. Email: fabio.derensis@unipr.it

Animal Production Science - https://doi.org/10.1071/AN17114
Submitted: 28 February 2017  Accepted: 5 June 2017   Published online: 14 December 2017

Abstract

The objective of the present study was to compare two common durations of altrenogest (ALT) feeding during different periods of the year on the fertility of gilts after ALT withdrawal. During a 12-month period gilt replacements that were assumed to be cyclic were subjected to oestrus synchronisation with 15 mg/day ALT administered for 18 days (ALT-18; n = 268) or 14 days (ALT-14; n = 153) whereas 275 non-treated gilts served as controls. Fewer ALT-14 than ALT-18 gilts expressed oestrus by 7 days after last ALT treatment (79.1% vs 88.8%; P < 0.05). Farrowing rate was lower (P < 0.05) for ALT-14 than for the other groups (81%, 91% and 92% for ALT-14, ALT-18, and Control, respectively) but farrowing rates were not affected by time of year. Control litter sizes were not different from ALT-14 except during September to November when Control litter sizes were larger than either ALT treatments (13.6 ± 0.33, 12.3 ± 0.65 and 12.7 ± 0.39 for Control, ALT-14 and ALT-18, respectively; P < 0.05). The ALT-18 gilts had larger litter sizes during January to August. The present data suggest that the appropriate duration of ALT feeding to synchronise oestrus in gilts is 18 days.

Additional keyword: season.


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