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Table 4 Perceived importance to 58 Irish farrow-to-finish pig farms of the different preventive measures suggested in the survey to combat biting behaviour in growing pigs

From: Irish pig farmer’s perceptions and experiences of tail and ear biting

Category Mean ± standard deviation (average score of category) Median (interquartile range*)
Taking care of animal health 6.35 ± 1.62a 7 (6)
Restricting animal density 6.26 ± 1.76 7 (1)
Even quality of feed 6.25 ± 1.83 7 (2)
Correct feed content 6.18 ± 1.87 7 (4)
Managing air movements (draughts, cold air pockets-e.g when slurry is low) 6.16 ± 1.86 7 (0)
Managing air quality 6.04 ± 1.69 7 (1)
Appropriate temperature in pen (not too hot or cold) 5.89 ± 2.00 7 (0)
Maintaining enough feeding space (enough space for each pig at the trough) 5.88 ± 1.96 7 (4)
Water available to all pigs 5.77 ± 2.04 7 (6)
Good quality pigs (healthy, evenly grown) 5.12 ± 2.35b 7 (2)
Use of objects for manipulation 4.74 ± 2.32b 5 (2)
Managing pen hygiene/cleanliness 4.39 ± 2.68b 5 (4)
Avoiding mixing of animals 4.00 ± 2.61b 3 (0)
Knowing the background of the piglet (housing and management in the farrowing unit) 3.56 ± 2.60b 3 (0)
Adequate light levels 3.28 ± 2.37b 3 (3)
Adjusting natural light from windows 3.26 ± 2.32b 3 (3)
Breed of pigs 3.02 ± 2.73b 2 (4)
Use of bedding type material 2.49 ± 2.48b 1 (6)
Feeding always at the same time 1.82 ± 2.72b 1 (0)
Managing noise level 1.70 ± 1.56b 1 (5)
  1. Different letters (a, b) indicate P < 0.01 based on pair-wise comparisons
  2. *Score 1-not important-7 very important