Welcome to Iowa, the pork capital of the world! Raising swine isn’t simply a job here, it’s a large part of our state’s makeup. According to an Iowa Pork Producers Association 2012 census, there are over 6,266 hog operations running in Iowa. On these hog operations, there are over 20 million pigs being raised in the state of Iowa at any given time!
Being the world’s leader in pork production, Iowa is determined to create the best pork product possible. With new LED lighting technologies made specifically for hog buildings, hog farmers are able to create the best product to date. Today we’re exploring the science behind ONCE Innovations LED dim to red swine lights and how they help create an amazing pork product.
The Swine’s Eye
It may be hard to believe that considering your hogs eyesight could improve the overall product of your pork. Yet recent studies show just how important it is to keep your swine’s eyes in mind. For instance, humans have 3 cones in each eye while swine only have 2. Animals with only 1 cone in their eyes see only black and white. As you can see, pigs fall in the middle. This means that while they are not colorblind, they struggle to see certain color wavelengths. Hogs can detect the color blue but struggle with colors on the green and red spectrum.
Although pigs do not register red and green light, they are attracted and move towards brightly lit areas opposed to shadowed areas. It has been shown that you can direct a hog’s movements with light alone. For instance, shining a light in front of a pig, instead of in their eyes, makes loading them onto a truck much quicker. In the same sense, shining a bright light over feeders encourages hogs to eat and increases their rate of gain.
The Brilliance of LED Dim to Red Swine Lights
With this knowledge of swine eyesight, lighting manufacturers, such as ONCE Innovations Inc., have created an LED light with dim to red capabilities.
When utilizing the LED dim to red lights, hog farmers are able to mimic a sunrise and sunset, easing the animals asleep and awake without creating anxiety. This feature keeps the animals docile and relaxed, creating a meatier product. When the lights dim they do not turn completely off, but rather dim to a red light the hogs perceive as darkness. This allows handlers to move around the building while the animals sleep.
Don’t Shine A Spotlight on Your Swine
Just as the type of lighting used in a hog barn is important, so is the duration of light the hogs are exposed to. Leaving a constant stream of light on in your hog barns is not healthy for your pigs. Studies have shown that extended hours of light can be beneficial to your swine’s appetite and rate of gain, but they must not be left under bright light for 24 hours straight. According to the Pork Network, piglets benefit from longer hours of light (between 15-18 hours) due to a seen increase in suckling. Also, longer hours of light have shown an increase in food intake in growers and finishers. With LED dim to red swine lights, hog handlers are able to create the best lighting in their buildings for the best results.
Sitler’s LED Supplies works exclusively with ONCE manufacturers for our agricultural lighting. To learn more about the many benefits of installing LED dim to red lights in your hog buildings, give us a call today at (319)-519-0039 or send us an email!
Posted in LED Agriculture Lighting