Pig Handling

DNL Farms ltd.
White Fox, Saskatchewan, Canada

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Nancy and Don Lidster

Don and Nancy Lidster are partners in DNL Farms Ltd. Both grew up on mixed farms in Saskatchewan, Canada, and both graduated from the University of Saskatchewan with BSc Agriculture degrees. Don and Nancy worked in Ag Extension and other Ag industry positions before starting their own farrow to finish hog operation in 1981. In 2001 they emptied their barns to concentrate on pork industry staff training.

In 1996, Nancy attended a 1 day Bud Williams Stockmanship School which led to ongoing work with Bud and Eunice Williams. Lidsters initially used pig handling video collected in their own barns to learn how Bud’s cattle handling methods could be applied to pigs. Since 2000 Nancy has taken every opportunity to video other handlers moving pigs in barns, packing plants, assembly yards, and trucks

Video forms the backbone of Low Stress Pig Handling.

  • Video lets us study pig handling events more carefully and learn more from them than if we could only watch events once in real time.
  • Video helps us pinpoint events leading up to the specific pig responses that help or interfere with pig movement.
  • Video helps handlers link their actions to pigs’ responses and see the changes they need to make to improve pig movement.
  • By watching video of many different handlers in many different situations we’ve identified response patterns that handlers need to understand if they are to move pigs effectively: response patterns that aren’t taught in other training programs.

Video lets us share individual handlers’ practical knowledge, experience, and skills with other handlers.

The focus of Low Stress Pig Handling is to help handlers find easier, more effective methods for moving pigs.