PhD Studentship in Animal/ Veterinary Science

PhD Studentship in Animal/ Veterinary Science – managing the lightweight pig syndrome

Reference Code: AG017

Closing Date: 31st January 2014


Name of the supervisors
Professor Ilias Kyriazakis, School of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development

BPEX Division of the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board and Primary Diets

Duration of the award
Four year PhD – Start date: September 2014

Project description
This studentship is funded by BPEX and Primary Diets, a leading feed specialist for piglets. It aims to develop management and nutritional strategies suitable for UK pig systems, to improve the performance of small piglets.

Through increases in sow prolificacy the number of piglets born per sow has increased substantially, but at the expense of piglet size. Managing lightweight pigs represent now a challenge for the European Pig Industry. The project will investigate the suitability of a number of different strategies that enhance performance of these pigs, but without compromising their larger counterparts, and investigate the short and long term consequences of these strategies on the performance, health and welfare of pigs. It will benefit from the close liaison with industry and revaluate current management solutions through the use of novel methodologies, such as automated monitoring and welfare outcomes.

Combining expertise in animal science, nutrition, epidemiology and animal behaviour, and working closely with industry, this interdisciplinary project will equip the student with unique skills for a future career in the relevant industries.

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Value of the award and eligibility
The award is available only to UK and EU Nationals. It covers in full four years tuition and will pay a stipend of £13,726pa (2013/14 rate).

Person specification
This is a project suitable for a student who is attracted by an interaction with the pig industry, attracted to biological challenges and the opportunity to develop novel methods leading to applied solutions. The successful candidate will have a first-class or upper-second-class Honours degree in animal or veterinary sience, biology, agriculture or other relevant subject, and preferably a Master’s degree in an appropriate topic.

How to apply
You must apply through the University’s online postgraduate application form selecting ‘PhD School of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development – Agriculture, Marketing & Food Marketing’ as the programme of study. Please insert the studentship/partnership reference number AG017. Only mandatory fields need to be completed (no personal statement or research proposal is required), a covering letter, CV and (if English is not your first language) a copy of your English language qualifications must be attached. The covering letter must state the title of the studentship, quote the reference number AG017 and state how your interests and experience relate to the project.

Please also send your covering letter and CV to Ilias Kyriazakis at:

Further information
For further information, please contact:
Professor Ilias Kyriazakis

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