Best practice recommendations regarding biosecurity and boars
On many breeding farms, a search boar is used for good oestrus stimulation in the sows. However, this activity also carries risks.
Direct contact between animals is the most effective way to transmit disease. With the oestrus stimulation the boar walks in front of and/or behind the sows and direct contact is possible. It is therefore important that the boar does not transmit disease to the sows and gilts. In general, it is advisable to buy animals from a farm that has at least the same health status, but preferably higher. These farms are free of a number of diseases and this reduces the chance of disease introduction. When an animal is purchased, it must be placed in quarantine upon arrival. The incubation period of a disease (the time between infection and the appearance of the first symptoms) determines the quarantine period. In general, a minimum quarantine period of four weeks is advised, but it is safer to apply a longer period, e.g. six to eight weeks. In addition to the prevention of disease introduction, the newly purchased animals can also adapt to the farm during the quarantine period and receive the necessary vaccinations (adaptation period). It is advised to administer the same vaccinations to boars and sows.
In order to keep the boar sufficiently active, mating can be allowed occasionally. However, sperm can also be a risk for disease introduction. This also applies when new genetics are introduced to the farm by artificial insemination.
- Buy animals from a farm with the same or higher health status.
- When purchasing animals, maintain a quarantine period of at least four weeks
- Vaccinate the boar together with the sows