Factors affecting reproduction in pigs in the small scale farming sector in the hills of Nepal
This study reviews the factors affecting reproductive efficiency in PAC pigs and identifies the major constraints in traditional pig production systems in relation to climatic environment, nutrition and management practices in the hills of eastern Nepal. The different factors affecting reproductive efficiencies were investigated and the possible means to overcome these problems are outlined under Nepalese situations. The majority of the pigs in the hills of Nepal are reared below their LCT throughout the year, causing an estimated loss of 43 % of the total feed intake requirements by climatic penalty. If this feed loss could be effectively utilised by improving housing conditions, the productivity of pigs could be greatly improved. Improvement in housing conditions seem to be the cheapest alternative for improving efficiency in Nepalese situations. Improvements in nutrition of rearing gilts and lactating sows resulted in improvements of reproductive outputs in both station and village experiments. Modified suckling management in late lactation resulted in shorter weaning to remating interval and needs to be introduced in the villages for better reproductive efficiency of pigs. Farmers in the hills of Nepal do not rear boar and sows together due to limitation of feed availability. Under such circumstances, an artificial boar pheromone (Boar Mate) had a beneficial effect on stimulating and detecting oestrus in PAC pigs. However, Boar Mate is not easily available and hence it is recommended to carry out further critical evaluation of boar urine, which gave promising pilot results, as an alternative.