A Farrowing Caretaker Interest Group formed in January and February will help people who work in the farrowing area of any pork producing operation improve skills critical for farrowing success.
The interest group lets caretakers learn at a time and location convenient to them, said Duane Reese, University of Nebraska swine specialist, who will lead the group along with Locke Karriker of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Iowa State. It is sponsored by Cooperative Extension at the University of Nebraska and Iowa State University, the Nebraska Pork Producers Association and Pork Checkoff funds.
"Group members use a common set of educational materials and shared teaching experiences," Reese said. "The interest group allows members to discuss issues concerning farrowing and devise operation-specific solutions to problems."
Educational materials are supplied to participants via CD-ROM. Members participate by phone from any location or by Polycom at Nebraska Cooperative Extension offices in Gage or Cuming counties. E-mail access also will be helpful to participate in ongoing discussions, Reese said.
Those interested in joining the group can order the Farrowing Management CD-ROM between Jan. 17-20. Reservations must be received by Jan. 17. To register, call (402) 472-6340.
Registration is $25 per person and includes all educational materials. Enrollment is limited to 15 people.
Phone bridge/Polycom conferences are Jan. 25, Feb. 8 and Feb. 23 from noon-1:30 p.m. Homework assignments and quizzes also are a part of the group.
The group will discuss the basics of lactating sow and piglet care. Although it is designed for beginners, it has also served as a refresher for people experienced in farrowing, Reese said. A Spanish language farrowing interest group will be formed in March.
For more information, contact Reese at (402) 472-6425 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.