Ventilation Principals Workshops and Training

David Stender, Swine Field Specialist, Northwest Area

Problem Statement:

Swine confinement operators are pressured to keep up with the advances in technology.  Principals in ventilation are poorly understood resulting in stressed pigs that tend to grow slower and become more susceptible to disease outbreak. 

Many hog production systems in Iowa are large and usually have independent training utilizing internal staff.  Partnering with these larger swine systems can be an advantage to ISU Extension and to the swine industry in Iowa as collaboration between the University and these local swine producers has potential to yield great benefits to both parties.  

Programmatic Response:

Three separate workshops were held fall and winter of 2007 for 115 producers, veterinarians and agricultural professionals.  One was an all day workshop for 12 producers using the hands-on demonstration building.  One session was an hour topic for 68 producers at a swine management workshop and the third was a half-day training for 35 producers in a large production system.


What did I learn from the workshop:

Learning different ways to ventilate such as seasonal ventilating patterns: warm weather vs. cold weather, and pulling moisture in winter vs. pulling the heat out in the summer; Was able to review fundamentals of ventilation in barns and was able to take many ideas back to implement for better function at this time of year;  The basic steps of ventilation;  Reasons why we need to ventilate the barn;  Presented both mathematical and practical sides of approaching ventilation Thank you;  The training program was real good;  It was real helpful;  It touched on the basics of ventilation systems;  It would help people with no idea how to ventilate barns;  It showed us how many cubic feet per minutes it would take to cool off the barn;  How little a drift it would take to chill a new born pig;  David was very informative-Brought a lot of new information to me, most has already been implemented into our barns;  It was helpful; learned a lot more about ventilation than I knew;  David was very knowledgeable and answered questions promptly and accurately;  It was good;  Went over some good topics;  Good ideas and things to take back to the farm;  Useful common sense information about basic ventilation principles;  Easy to understand;  Went over a lot of good information;  It helped by letting us know what all the functions are of the ventilation;  How to correct things that are restricting air flow;  How to set up your programming for different barns;  Air velocity at 800 rpm;  Static pressure;  Heat up air 18 drops humidity in half;  David was a very good speaker; he told it in a way that I could understand it better.  Thank you David; Some good information; thought some was deeper than needed to be, we probably arent going to do the math.  But the cold air across the ceiling and the door slamming was practical and will be used; Timing was good; speaker was knowledgeable.


The following are reported changes in ventilation management implemented because of what was learned from the program:

Checking/ measuring inlet speed;  Be more observant in my operation; Do some checking of current settings and air quality;  Checking static pressure;  Check overall ventilation controls and adjustments;  Checking what you can't always see;  Watch air intake through inlets, watch pigs for signs of being too cold too hot;  Keep pigs cool and dry in winter.

Follow-up survey data from 16 operations show that ventilation workshops are beneficial to them. One operation reported a hundred dollar benefit; four operations reported $500; four report $1000; four $2500 and three operations said the benefit of a ventilation workshop is worth $5000.


150  Iowa Pork Industry Cente

Page last updated: June 13, 2008
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