Writtle News

Student research proves that pig welfare can be improved by music…

May 2012

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(NOTE: This is an archived press release.)

Kayleigh Langdon’s MSc research project has caught the attention of the agricultural media after she presented her research at this year's British Society of Animal Science Conference (BSASC). Kayleigh’s research inspired her to play the radio, tuned into music or a chat show, to pigs.

Kayleigh’s conclusions reported that the radio can have a positive effect on sow and piglet behaviour during the three weeks they spend in a farrowing crate, reducing apparent stress and increasing her suckling and the level of play in young piglets.

At the BSASC Kayleigh reported: “playing a radio seems beneficial to both sows and piglets, perhaps because audio enrichment provided a stimulus to reduce the boredom of confined conditions. It also reduced the reaction of the sows to humans.”

The research also investigated into the potential of radio acting as a buffer to negative noise.

The study was undertaken as part of Kayleigh’s dissertation for her MSc Animal Biology and Welfare (which is now the MSc Animal Welfare and Conservation.)

Full reference:

Langdon, K. and Amory, J.R. (2012) The effect of radio on the welfare and behaviour of sows and their piglets in farrowing crates. British Society of Animal Science AGM, University of Nottingham.