Feed composition and boar behaviour

539827_533671256672131_533808998_nLiterature research has revealed that undesirable behaviour among boars can possibly be reduced by modifying the composition of their feed. The study was commissioned by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Productschap Vee en Vlees [Product Board for Livestock and Meat] and was conducted by Prophys Animal Science Consultancy as part of the five-year project ‘Stopping the castration of boar piglets’.

The literature research inventoried knowledge concerning hormonal and neuro-endocrine regulation of boars’ uncontrolled behaviour. It also inventoried the options for reducing this behaviour by changing the composition of the feed. The neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin play an important role in the expression of undesirable behaviour. Extra tryptophan in the feed stimulates the production of the latter in the brain and can supress aggressive (and very probably also sexual) behaviour.

Further information

  • The results of the literature research are described in the extensive summary ‘Prospects to reduce aggressive and sexual behaviour in entire male pigs’. The full report can be requested by contacting Carola van der Peet-Schwering on Tel. No.: +31 (0)320 293506 or e-mailing: carola.vanderpeet@wur.nl
  • For questions about the study ‘Stoppen met castreren van beerbiggen’ [‘Stopping the castration of boar piglets’] please contact Bonne van Dam at the Product Board for Livestock and Meat by calling Tel. No. +31 (0)79 3687561 or by e-mailing: bvandam@pve.nl.