Groups of sows housed in pens with concrete floor were observed to detect differences in feeding and drinking behaviour between animals of high- and low-rank. Dominant individuals remained at the centre of the mash pile defending the food against other animals. The total time spent feeding was similar in high- and low-ranking sows. However, the high ranking sows interrupted feeding more often; subordinates stopped feeding for longer periods because they retreated from attacks. As the mash began to disappear the low-ranking sows resisted the dominants' attacks and refused to leave the feeding area. Drinking behaviour was very frequent in subordinate sows in the early minutes of the meal; this is probably a redirected behaviour resulting from the frustration of being not able to feed continuously.
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