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Partial Weaning at Six Weeks of Age Reduces Biting among Mink Kits (Neovison Vison)

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DOI: 10.4236/ojas.2015.52009    2,257 Downloads   2,609 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

Recent studies have demonstrated that postponed weaning age from 6 weeks to 8 weeks in mink increases the number of bites among mink kits. Therefore, a series of studies have been conducted in order to quantify effects of weaning age on mortality, number of bites and growth rates in mink kits weaned at 42 and 56 days after birth during two consecutive breeding seasons. Partial weaning of large litters on Day 42 reduced the number of mink kits and litters with bites from an average frequency of 1.6% to 1.0% for kits and 8.1% to 5.1% for litters and increased growth rate of male kits. These results are highly important for ensuring optimal welfare in mink production, and we recommend that partial weaning (dividing) of large litters should be considered in practical mink farming in the future.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Clausen, T. and Larsen, P. (2015) Partial Weaning at Six Weeks of Age Reduces Biting among Mink Kits (Neovison Vison). Open Journal of Animal Sciences, 5, 71-76. doi: 10.4236/ojas.2015.52009.

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