1. bookVolume 13 (2013): Issue 4 (October 2013)
    Issue Editors: Magdalena Bielska, Jerzy Pilawski, Katarzyna Skupniewicz
Journal Details
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Journal
eISSN
2300-8733
ISSN
1642-3402
First Published
25 Nov 2011
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English
access type Open Access

Extra Light During Pregnancy Improves Reproductive Performance of Mink (Neovison Vison) / Dodatkowe Światło W Okresie Ciąży Poprawia Wskaźniki Użytkowości Rozrodczej U Norki (Neovison Vison)

Published Online: 20 Oct 2013
Volume & Issue: Volume 13 (2013) - Issue 4 (October 2013) - Issue Editors: Magdalena Bielska, Jerzy Pilawski, Katarzyna Skupniewicz
Page range: 797 - 805
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2300-8733
ISSN
1642-3402
First Published
25 Nov 2011
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English
Abstract

The aim of this study was to determine the effect of artificially extended daylight applied during pregnancy on reproductive performance in farmed mink. The material consisted of 536 female Black (or “short NAP”) mink aged 2 years. To analyse the reproductive performance, we selected females mated twice during the period 13 to 17 March. Energy-saving bulbs of 11 watts each (equivalent to traditional 60-watt bulbs) were placed above the cages of the females. The experiment involved two groups of females: the control group (n = 258) were females kept under natural daylight throughout pregnancy; the females of the treatment group (n = 278) were additionally subjected to extended photoperiod - up to 16 hours of light per day, applied from 20 March to 15 April. Selected reproduction indicators were analysed among the groups. The extended daylight applied during pregnancy of mink positively influenced many of the analysed indices. The duration of diapause and related total length of gestation decreased, the litter size - both at birth and at weaning - significantly increased. Pre-weaning mortality of young and the proportion of nonbreeding females slightly decreased as a result of the treatment, which from the practical point of view might be seen as a beneficial effect; however, these parameters are shaped by other factors than photoperiod. The whelping season was both commenced and completed earlier among females subjected to extra light during pregnancy, which improved the organization of work on the farm. Artificial illumination of pregnant mink in Poland’s climate can be applied with great success and introducing this treatment to the mink breeding technology on a permanent basis should be seriously considered.

Keywords

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