Module: Livestock Production 2

Module details

  • Module code

  • Module leader

    Christopher Brough
  • Module Level

  • Module credits

  • Min study time

    150 hours
  • Contact hrs

    54 hours

Module content

The following topics will be considered for the main systems of livestock production available to UK farmers:

  1. The structure and importance of the industry in the UK, EU and world, with reference to key constraints on production, efficiency of resource use and product quality.
  2. Applied practical management of reproduction, lactation, nutrition and growth and development within a commercial production system.
  3. Breeding techniques and improvements and selection programmes.
  4. Maintenance of high animal health and welfare status and disease with preventative control practices.
  5. Analysis of livestock performance records to identify, select and target sub-optimal and optimal performance indices.

Module outcomes

To achieve credit for this module, students must be able to:

  1. State the comparative importance of the UK industry and recognise the constraints on production and position within the global market.
  2. Apply relevant research into one of the following: animal growth, reproduction, lactation management, genetics, nutrition and health and welfare, and the synthesis of the production system.
  3. Evaluate biological and economic constraints on production and systems.
  4. Develop skills to identify, target, manipulate and correct sub-optimal physical and financial performance indices.
  5. Identify and research the characteristics of a market and evaluate the factors which need to be considered, in relation to the design and management of the production system with regard to the desired quality and performance of the livestock.
  6. Select, design and plan an appropriate production system for the production of a desired product for a specific market.
  7. Identify and discuss the scientific and financial management considerations required within the ruminant and non-ruminant systems, to achieve a profitable and efficient enterprise.


Assessment Description Weighting
Coursework Synthesis paper - select, design and plan a fully referenced evaluation and critical analysis of an appropriate production system for a desired product and market. 60%
Examination Unseen exam (2 hours) 40%

Assessments may differ in 2020/21 due to adjustments for Covid-19. Please check Gateway for the latest regulations.

Key texts

Students should be familiar with the content of the following:

  • Allen, D. (1990). Planned Beef Production and Marketing. Blackwell Scientific.
  • Akers, R.M. and Denbow, D.M. (2008). Anatomy and Physiology of Domestic Animals. Blackwell Publishing.
  • Aitken, I.D. (2007). Diseases of Sheep. (4th edition). Blackwell Publishing.
  • Appleby, M.C. (1992). Poultry Production Systems. Cab International.
  • Croston, D. and Pollott, G.E. (1994). Planned Sheep Production. (2nd edition). Blackwell Scientific.
  • English, P.R., Fowler, V.R., Baxter, S. and Smith, W. (1996). The Growing and Finishing Pig: Improving Efficiency. (Revised edition). Farming Press.
  • Field, T.G. (2007). Beef Production and Management Decisions. (5th edition). Pearson Education.
  • Field, T.G., Taylor, R.E. (2008). Scientific Farm Animal Production: An Introduction to Animal Science. (9th edition). Pearson Education.
  • Frandson, R.D., Wilke, W.L. and Fails, A.D. (2009) Anatomy and physiology of farm animals 7th edn. Wiley-Blackwell Garnsworthy, P.C. (2005). Calf and Heifer Rearing. (Nottingham U Easter School In Agricultural Science; 60). Nottingham University Press.
  • Leaver, J.D. (1990). Milk Production Science and Practice. (3rd edition). Longmans Scientific and Technical.
  • Webster, J. (1993). Understanding The Dairy Cow. (2nd edition). Blackwell Scientific.
  • Whittemore, C.T. (2006). Whittemore's Science and Practice of Pig Production. (3rd edition). I. Kyriazakis and C.T. Whittemore Eds. Blackwell Publishing