Engineered solutions for animal heat stress abatement in livestock buildings.

Claudia Arcidiacono

Abstract


Heat stress in animal housing is one of the drivers affecting animal productivity and welfare in hot climates, and causing consequent reduced profits for the farmers. The main challenges that livestock breeding faces in hot climates regards how to foster, improve, and assess methods and strategies for animal heat stress abatement. Research studies in this field have generally proposed modifications in herd management and in feeding strategies, breed selection, and engineered solutions aimed at exploiting heat transmission phenomena. In this paper, the most recent engineered solutions for animal heat stress abatement in livestock buildings have been reviewed and described; they have involved new building and ventilation design and modelling, and improved cooling systems and control. Results of this study have shown that two new concepts have been put forward; they concern the focus of the analyses on the animal occupied zone (AOZ) and the requirement of environmental homogeneity in the breeding environment for air supply and climate control. The engineered solutions described have all been recognised to have made important contributions to the development and assessment of novel heat stress abatement strategies for animals in livestock buildings. Finally, the analysis of these solutions allowed identification of the main issues in the field, to what extent they have been addressed and which issues should be object of further research.

Keywords


livestock buildings; design; modelling; ventilation; hot climate

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