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The effects of an activity ball and ropes on pigs’ behaviours
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
2012 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10,5 credits / 16 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Rooting and exploring are two behaviours pigs in the wild spend considerable time doing. When kept in pens with limited access to bedding materials stress can originate and often lead to undesired behaviours. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether environmental enrichment in terms of ropes and an activity ball containing piglet food, can provide an outlet for their natural behaviours and thus reduce undesired behaviours. In total, 141 pigs were used and divided into three groups, control-, activity ball- and rope groups. The observation methods used were 1/0 recording and instantaneous recording with 15 second intervals. In the rope group a significant difference was seen in the interaction with enrichment, as it was higher on day 1. Between the three groups, a decrease in ear-, tail- and equipment biting was seen in the two enriched groups on day 1. On day 3 these difference could only be seen between the control group and the other two groups in equipment biting. However, few data ware collected and so we cannot confirm our hypotheses, concerning whether the environmental enrichments decreased the undesirable behaviours or not. However, most of our findings are in compliance with earlier studies as we among other things found that the rope worked better than the activity ball and that the interest of the enrichments decreased with time. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 16 p.
Keyword [en]
Environmental enrichment, rope, activity ball, pig, behaviour
National Category
Biological Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-79027ISRN: LITH-IFM-G-EX--12/2668--SWOAI: diva2:537854
Subject / course
2012-05-31, A2, Linköping, 18:05 (Swedish)
Available from: 2012-06-28 Created: 2012-06-27 Last updated: 2012-06-28Bibliographically approved

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Nilsson, Emma
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