Using principal component analysis, records of 435 animals from an F2 swine population were used to identity independent and informative variables of economically important performance. The following performance traits were recorded: litter size at birth (BL), litter size at weaning (WL), teat number (TN), birth weight (BW), weight at 21 (W21), 42 (W42), 63 (W63) and 77 (W77) days of age, average daily gain (ADG), feed intake (FI) and feed:gain ratio (FGR) from 77 to 105 days of age. Six principal components expressed variation lower than 0.7 (eigen values lower than 0.7) suggesting that six variables could be discarded with little information loss. The discarded variables present significant simple linear correlation with the retained variables. Retaining variables BL, TN, W77, FI and FGR and eliminating all the rest would retain most of the relevant information in the original data set.
swine; multivariate analysis; correlation; discard; growth; litter size; performance