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Julia Calderón Díaz

Postdoctoral Researcher

Research Interests

  • Pig health
  • Sow longevity
  • Objective methods for pig feet and leg conformation assessment and lameness identification
  • Dynamic space requirements for housing sows
  • Pig welfare and behaviour
  • Animal husbandry
  • Data analysis
  • Economics of pig production

Current Projects

SWAB: Surveillance Welfare and Biosecurity of farmed animals. Working with scientists, industry, farmers and vets to develop novel solutions for some of the key issues facing Irish agriculture in the area of animal health and welfare.

TPPM: Teagasc Pig Production Model.A stochastic bio-economic model for farrow-to-finish pig farms


  • Professional Certificate in Bioinformatics, University College Dublin (2017) 
  • Ph.D in Animal Science, University College Dublin, Ireland (2014) 
  • M.Sc. in Animal Sciences, AgroParisTech, Paris France (2009) 
  • M.Sc. in Animal Breeding and Genetics, Universität für Bodenkultur, Vienna, Austria  (2009) 
  • B.Sc in Agricultural Science, Escuela Agrícola Panamericana “Zamorano”, Honduras (2005)

Post doctoral education:

  • Iowa State University (2013-2015)
  • Teagasc (2015- present)


I graduated from my BSc. Agriculture Sciences in 2005 from the Escuela Agrícola Panamericana  ‘Zamorano’, Honduras. I continued with my MSc studies under the Erasmus Mundus programme in the European Master in Animal Breeding and Genetics at the Universität für Bodenkultur, Vienna, Austria, and at AgroParisTech, Paris, France, resulting in the achievement of 2 MSc degrees in 2009. Additionally, I conducted my MSc thesis project at the INRA Jouy-en-Josas, France, estimating correlative responses on sow reproduction in a selection experiment for residual feed intake. I completed my PhD degree in Agriculture and Food Science with a focus on sow welfare and behaviour from University College Dublin, Ireland in 2014, but as a recipient of a Teagasc Walsh Fellowship, I was based at Teagasc Moorepark, Fermoy.

From October 2013 to October 2015, I worked as a postdoctoral research associate at the Department of Animal Science at the Iowa State University in the U.S. National Pork Board “Sow Lifetime Productivity” project focusing on improving sow longevity through feeding practices during the gilt developmental period. I am currently working as a postdoctoral research fellow at the Pig Development Teagasc, Fermoy, working mainly on a project regarding risk factors for respiratory diseases in growing-finishing pigs and developing a budgetary simulation model for the Irish pig production.

I completed a professional certificate in Bioinformatics from University College Dublin in 2017.


Professional Membership

  • American Societies of Animal Science
  • European Federation of Animal Science
  • Camp Montoro, J., Manzanilla, E.G., Solà-Oriol, D., Muns, R., Gasa, J., Clear, O., Calderón Díaz, J. A. 2020. Predicting productive performance in grow-finisher pigs using birth and weaning body weight. Animals, Special Issue "Impact of Body Weight Variability in the Swine Industry: A Holistic Approach". 10, 1017; doi:10.3390/ani10061017
  • Azarpajouh, S., Calderón Díaz, J. A., Taheri, H. Precision livestock farming: automatic lameness detection in intensive livestock systems - A review. CAB reviews. 15: 31. doi: 10.1079/PAVSNNR202015031
  • Mumm, J., Calderón Díaz, J.A., Stock, J.D., Johnson, A.K., Ramírez, A., Azarpajouh, S., Stalder, K.J. 2020. Characterization of the lying and rising sequence in lame and non-lame sows. Applied Animal Behaviour Science. 226, 10496
  • McNeil, B.M., Stalder, K., Calderón Díaz, J.A., Stock, J.D., Parsons, T.D., Beam, D.L., Johnson, A.K., Bruns, C.E., Niemi, J.B. 2019. Development of sow lameness classification trees using an embedded microcomputer-based force plate in a commercial setting. Journal of Animal Science and Livestock Production. 2, 2-6
  • Diana, A., Boyle, L.A., Manzanilla, E.G., Leonard, F.C., Calderón Díaz, J. A. 2019. Ear, tail and skin lesions vary according to different production flows in a farrow-to-finish pig farm. Porcine Health Management. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40813-019-0126-9
  • Calderón Díaz, J.A., Shalloo, L., Niemi, J., Kyriazakis, I., McKeon, M., McCutcheon, G., Bohan, A., Manzanilla, E.G. 2019. Description and validation of the Teagasc Pig Production Model. Journal of Animal Science. 97: 2867-2885. doi: 10.1093/jas/skz163
  • Azarpajouh, S., Calderón Díaz, J.A., Clifford-Rathert, C., Segura Correa, J., Lamberson, W. 2019. Genetics of footrot resistance in small ruminants - a review. CAB Reviews. 14:33. doi: 10.1079/PAVSNNR201914033
  • Mumm, J., Calderón Díaz, J.A., Stock, J.D., Johnson, A.K., Dekkers, J.C.M., Ramirez, A., Azarpajouh, S., Stalder, K.J. 2019. Dynamic space utilization for lame and non-lame gestating sows determined by the lying-standing sequence. Livestock Science. 223: 1-7.
  • Rodrigues da Costa, M., Gasa Gasó, J., Calderón Díaz, J.A., Postma, M., Dewulf, J., McCutcheon, G., Garcia Manzanilla, E. 2019. Using the Biocheck.UGentTM scoring tool in Irish farrow-to-finish pig farms: assessing biosecurity and its relation to productive performance. Porcine Health Management. 5:4 doi.org/10.1186/s40813-018-0113-6.
  • McNeil, B.M., Calderón Díaz, J. A., Bruns, C.E., Stock, J.D., Millman, S.T., Johnson, A.K., Karriker, L.A., Stalder, K.J. 2018. Determining the time required to detect induced sow lameness using an embedded microcomputer-based force plate system. American Journal of Animal and Veterinary Sciences. 13: 59-65. DOI: 10.3844/ajavsp.2018.59.65
  • Stock, J., Calderón Díaz, J. A., Rothschild, M., Mote, B., Stalder, K. 2018. Objective evaluation of female feet and leg joint conformation at time of selection and post 1st parity in swine. Journal of Animal Science. doi.org/10.1093/jas/sky227
  • Calderón Díaz, J. A., Manzanilla, E.G., Diana, A., Boyle, L. 2018. Cross-fostering implication for pig mortality, welfare and performance. Frontiers in Veterinary Science – Animal Behaviour and Welfare section. 5:123. doi: 10.3389/fvets.2018.00123.
  • van Staaveren, N., Calderón Díaz, J. A., Manzanilla, E. G., Hanlon, A., Boyle, L. 2018. Prevalence of health and welfare outcomes in the weaner and finisher stages of the production cycle on 31 Irish pig farms. Irish Veterinary Journal. 71:9. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13620-018-0121-5
  • Azarpajouh, S, Marchewka, J., Segura Correa, J.C., Calderón Díaz, J. A. 2018. Anatomical characterization of hoof growth pattern in six Iranian sheep breeds and its possible implication for trimming recommendations. Tropical Animal Health and Production. DOI: 10.1007/s11250-018-1566-y
  • McCormack, U., Curião, T., Wilkinson, T., Metzler-Zebeli, B., Reyer, H., Ryan, T., Calderón Díaz, J. A., Crispie, F., Cotter, P.D., Creevey, C.J., Gardiner, G.E., Lawlor, P.G. 2018 Faecal microbiota transplantation in gestating sows and neonatal offspring alters lifetime intestinal microbiota and growth in offspring. mSystems. 3:e00134-17.
  • Diana, A., Manzanilla, E.G., Calderón Díaz, J. A., Leonard, N., Boyle, L. 2017. Do weaner pigs need in-feed antibiotics to ensure good health and welfare? PLoS ONE 12(10): e0185622