Flavored sisal ropes as environmental enrichment for nursery piglets
Janaina Cristina da Silva Maciel de Souza, Laya Kannan Silva Alves, Eduarda Buck Bernardes Guimarães, Gabriela dos Santos Madella, Bruno Braga Carnino, Emilye Izabele Cristina de Moraes, Pedro Ventura Dibo, Nicolas Carvalho Braga, Johnny Maciel de Souza, Bo Zhou, Cesar Augusto Pospissil Garbossa
The objective of the present study was to evaluate the behavior of piglets in the nursery phase in the presence of pure sisal ropes, soaked with different flavors as a means of environmental enrichment. Sixty-four piglets with 35 days of age in the nursery phase were used, piglets were randomly distributed in a completely randomized design in 16 pens, with four animals in each pen and there was no separation of pens by group. Three treatments were used: Pure rope (PR) which was considered the control of the pen, rope soaked in vanilla essence and sugar (SV), and rope soaked in coffee (SC). An ethogram was prepared for observations of the following behavioral parameters, eating, drinking, urinating, defecating, lying down, standing, playful, and others. The parameters were measured every 10 minutes in a total of three daily assessments with two hours each for a period of three days. There was a greater preference of piglets for the SV rope with a percentage of 63.2% in the observations of the interactions. A possible justification for the result is the fact that this rope is the most palatable for piglets since piglets prefer sweet tastes. The PR rope aroused curiosity in the piglets, with a percentage of observations of 21.4%. Therefore, the use of equipment flavored with sweet vanilla taste is promising as a means of environmental enrichment, being more interesting to piglets.
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