mercredi 3 février 2016

MSc POSITION – University of Manitoba – Department of Animal Science

Date: Thesis MSc (2 years) to start in May or September 2016.
Subject: Impact of slatted floor design on sow behaviour and lameness occurrence.
Description: This study is part of a research program on housing and management of group-housed gestating sows led by Dr. Laurie Connor, Department of Animal Science, University of Manitoba (UoM), Canada. Overall, the project focuses on determining the most effective slat and gap widths of flooring for group sow housing considering both the comfort of the sow and ease of manure management. In collaboration with another student who will be investigating the engineering and manure management aspects, the MSc student will work on the impact of two slatted floor designs for sows housed in groups with electronic sow feeder on their postural behaviour and activities and the development of lameness problems over two parities. Lameness will be assessed using a force plate measuring weight distribution between limbs and visual scoring of gait and claw lesions. This project will be done in collaboration with Dr. Nicolas Devillers of the Dairy and Swine R&D Centre of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) in Sherbrooke (Qc).
The student will have to collect production and behavioural data, analyse video recordings, process data, run statistical analysis and write the thesis and a scientific article. The student will be cosupervised by Drs. Laurie Connor (UoM) and Nicolas Devillers (AAFC). The student will be registered at UoM, the experiment will take place at the Glenlea Research Station of UoM. Some analytical work may have to be done at AAFC in Sherbrooke. A stipend will be provided through the research grant.
Candidate skills: B.Sc. in animal science, animal biology or veterinary science (Minimum GPA 3.0)
Motivation for the study of animal welfare and behaviour
Knowledge of animal sciences, especially animal behaviour
Knowledge of computer (Pack Office) and statistical analysis
Practical experience in ethology and in pig production would be an asset

For information, please contact Dr. Laurie Connor.
For application, please send a CV, a motivation letter and contact information for two references.
Dr. Laurie Connor
Dept. of Animal Science
Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences
University of Manitoba, R3T 2N2
Phone number: 204 474-9219
Fax: 204 474-7628