Glenlea Swine Research
Alternative barn with
straw bedding and natural ventilation.
Conventional barn with slat concrete
flooring and hanging toys.
Off-site AIAO research
Glenlea Swine Research Unit is comprised of two 130-sow
farrow-to-finish production units and an off-site AIAO
(all-in-all-out) research barn, constructed as part of the
infrastructure for the National
Center for Livestock and the Environment (NCLE) in
conventional barn operation is a based on a liquid/slurry
manure system with pigs housed on total or partially slatted
concrete floors representative of the majority of current
commercial pig housing.
alternative barn operates on a solid manure system for
breeding/gestation and grow-finish phases of production.
the NCLE concept embraces the comparison of these two manure
systems as part of the whole farm ecosystem. Management and
pig genetics in each barn are identical to facilitate
meaningful comparisons of the housing systems. The current
agreement with Genesus, a swine genetics company, keeps new
generation genetics in the university herd and ensures our
research, teaching, and work experience programs use the
prolific, lean, and fast-growing pigs characteristic of
herds are kept in group housing except during farrowing and
for specific research projects requiring individual
accommodation. Nursery rooms and grow-finish areas are
designed to duplicate commercial operation but have the
flexibility to accommodate research requirements applicable to
the pork production industry. Research areas include nutrient
utilization, reproduction, animal environment and housing,
behaviour, and welfare. Additionally, long-term research
involving the cycling of nutrients and microbes through the
farm ecosystem incorporates the conventional and alternative
barns into the models.