People Improving Growth for Swine ( PIGS ) in Micronesia
This grant is a training program for livestock agents working with the Extension Service of the Land-Grants Institutions, State Department of Agriculture staff and hog producers in Micronesia. Correspondence and workshops are utilized to educate and train participants. Teaching materials are produced from swine factsheets produced by the Pork Industry handbook and local publications from the University of Hawaii and University of Guam. Factsheets and publications are simplified and summarized by program major participants to fit clientele level of understanding. These lessons are mailed monthly to participants.
Participants will be selected to attend a workshop on Guam. Selection of particpants will be based on quiz results and finishing the whole course of the training program
1. Promote good stewardship of the nation’s natural resources by providing site specific and profitable sustainable farming and ranching methods that strengthen agricultural competitiveness.
2. Enhance the quality of life for farmers/ranchers and ensure rural community viability, by increasing income and employment-especially profitable self-employment opportunities in agriculture and rural communities. Educate and train hog producers, extension agents and agricultural staff in swine production and management through correspondence lessons and training workshops.
Nine lessons in factsheet format were mailed to 56 participants composed of extension agents, hog producers and livestock staff in Micronesia. factsheets were also passed to clients on Guam. These factsheets were prepared in Pagemaker and AdobePhotoshop program. Factsheets are 5 – 7 pages of texts and photo that are printed in color. The titles of the factshhets are as follows.
1. Best Practices for Artificial Insemination of Swine in the Pacific islands
2. Weaning Management
3. Foot and Mouth Disease
4. Swine Disease Series on Uterine Prolapse, Dystocia and mange
5. Guidelines for Proper Gilt Management
6. Water Quality for Hogs
7. Swine Waste Management
8. Swine Health behavior
9. Swine Behavior
Ten participants from the region attended the swine management workshop conducted on March 26 -30, 2001 at the University of Guam. Three of the participants were hog producers. The highlight of the workshop is the translation of the piglet management poster to each of the participant’s dialect. One of the workshop’s sessions was also devoted to Farmer/Rancher grant writing. the workshop activities included lectures and reviews of the factsheets produced. The participants had hands-on experience on piglet management at various hog farms.
Two quizzes were also given to participants. Quiz results will determine eligible participants for a workshop this April 2002.
The remaining activities of this project are 4 factsheets to be produced and 1 workshop.
Impacts and Contributions/Outcomes
Agricultural professionals and extension agents will be educated and trained with current swine management. They will in turn share the knowledge and experience to their clients and to the community. The working relationships between agents and producers will improve since the information and educational opportunities are both available to both extension agents and producers.
An evaluation was conducted at the end of the workshop on March 26 – 30, 2001. The feedback from each participant was very encouraging. They suggested that these educational activities should be continued either by conducting workshops in the region and producing factsheets. They find the information and photos interesting and educational.
The demonstration of the farrowing crate and gestating stalls in Pohnpei created interest among the hog producers in the village. The first delivery in the farrowing crate was very successful. The producers saw healthier and bigger piglets delivered in a crate compared to those delivered in concrete slab or in the ground.
The Director of the Yap Stae of Agriculture made a request to our collede dean for a similar workshop to be condcuted in Yap this January 2002.
Nine factshhets on swine production were mailed to extension agents and hog producers in Micronesia. A poster on piglet management was also produced and translated to 4 island dialects.