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Snow Loads on Buildings

The excessive amount of ice and snow this past month has livestock owners concerned about snow load and potential roof collapse. The design roof snow load for residential buildings in MN is set by state statutes and is 42 pounds per square foot (psf) in northern MN and 35 psf in southern MN. However, many agricultural buildings are built using a 20 psf snow load which would be expected to handle six feet of dry, fluffy snow or one foot of wet, heavy snow.

Recent posts

Microbiome studies in swine systems: Challenges and opportunities (Part 1)

Reprinted as posted on Swine in Minnesota blog. Report written by Dr. Andres Gomez, University of Minnesota Department of Animal Science

Key Points
Microbiome and more specifically the bacteria residing in the gut play multiple roles related with nutrition and health.The study of swine gut bacteria is still in its early stages, and the field contains many possibilities exciting possibilities.Funding and microbiome classification are two of the most important barriers to overcome in order to gain insight into the complex field of swine gut bacteria.Continue Reading.

Microbiome studies in swine systems: Challenges and opportunities (Part 2)

Reprinted as posted on Swine in Minnesota blog. Report written by Dr. Andres Gomez, University of Minnesota Department of Animal Science

Key Points

Due to the nature of microbiome it cannot be studied separated from other relevant information and should be studied together with metabolomics, genomics, immunity and nutrition.Development of models at different levels are needed to evaluate the effect on microbiome of different strategies and to evaluate the impact of microbiome changes on the pig gut health.Continue Reading.

Corn DDGS is a high-value feed ingredient for swine: Part 9

By Dr. Jerry Shurson, University of Minnesota Department of Animal Science
© 2019 Feedstuffs. Reprinted with permission from Vol. 91, No. 02, February 11, 2019


Phosphorus is the third most expensive component of swine diets, and unlike all other grains and grain co-products, dried distillers grains with solubles (DDGS) contain a high concentration of total and digestible phosphorus.

Therefore, when adding DDGS to swine diets formulated on a digestible phosphorus basis, significant reductions in inorganic supplementation and diet cost can be achieved. In addition, many ethanol plants add phytase during the ethanol and DDGS production process, which further improves the phosphorus digestibility of DDGS but also contributes to variation in digestible phosphorus content among DDGS sources (Rodrigues-Reis et al., 2018).

Biosecurity LIVE from MN Pork Congress

This year at MN Pork Congress, the University of
Minnesota Swine Group not only had a booth, but
also had the Biosecure Entry Education Trailer (BEET) on display to show folks the educational tool available to teach biosecurity. Swine Extension Educators, Sarah Schieck and Diane DeWitte recorded a Facebook Live video from the 2019 MN Pork Congress trade show floor. Watch from our UMN Swine Extension Facebook page.

Sarah Schieck and Diane DeWitte, along with Abby Neu, Poultry Extension Educator, use the BEET unit when doing biosecurity education. So far the trailer has been used to provide biosecurity programming to pork production companies, poultry groups, industry and Minnesota 4-H livestock groups. If you would like us to provide biosecurity programming to your group, contact Sarah Schieck (schi0466@umn.edu or 320-235-0726 ext. 2004) or Diane DeWitte (stouf002@umn.edu or 507-389-5541).