BOARS – Being prepared Part II

Edward Withers – Clifton Lodge Smallholding

What do we know about boars…

Some of us hire, keep and bring on boars for meat but there is more to them than that. We all keep and grow on gilts and ask questions which is pertinent to them so lets discuss the boys.

The reproductive physiology of boars is intriguing because their testicular morphology and secretion of testicular steroids are distinctively different from those in other species. The testicles of boars contain a higher percentage of interstitial tissue and the volume of their ejaculate is unusually large, 50 to 400ml. Blood concentrations of estrogens in boars exceed those of estrous female pigs and their testicles produce significant quantities of the musk-smelling scent due to pheromones/hormones/testosterone.

In the scrotum, testicular temperatures are several degrees lower than the internal body temperature owing to both its anatomical position and its integrated vascular plexus that cools the blood entering the testes. The scrotum, by altering its wall thickness and varying the proximity of the testes to the body cavity, serves a critical role as elevated testicular temperature is detrimental to the production of viable spermatozoa and fertility.

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