Thursday, May 8, 2014

Shoat it Out!

The boys are here! A pair of Tamworth/Old Spot crosses. It's been hard finding pigs this spring but farming friends Ejay and Kim got a hold of a whole farrowing and saved two for me. We met at a fairgrounds between both our farms yesterday and did the hand off. They had a big van and I had my truck. It didn't take long to swap the shoats from the two vehicles and we had a few minutes of catching up before they were on their way to help a friend get in her spring planting and I was back home to prepare for the 45 chicks arriving the next day. All of a sudden this place is exploding with animals! Pigs, chickens, and a goose about to hatch a clutch of goslings (I hope). The ride home was good and steady. Gibson was rolling shotgun and bluegrass on the radio. Not a bad way to spend a Wednesday afternoon.

I'm off to get those chicks from the post office and get them set up in the barn. Enjoy your Thursday, friends! And if you want to join in on the fun, over on my facebook page we are having a naming contest. Throw in your ideas!


Blogger kandy Gray said...

my pigs are coming today!!! to tell the truth, its because you did it first. yah, bacon seed!

May 8, 2014 at 10:13 AM  
Blogger Tanya T said...

I would really love to get a couple of pigs to raise for meat but I have so many questions...can I bother you with two? Besides feeding them and cleaning up after them, what other - let's say - maintenance is required? How old are the pigs when you get them and how long do you keep them? Ok I snuck three in there :)

May 8, 2014 at 10:53 AM  
Blogger Jenna said...

Hey tanya! So I think pigs are great, but if you ask 4 farmers that same series of questions you can expect 14 answers!

My pigs are either in a pen in the barn or outdoors in a pen behind the house. They need shelter, for sure. Pigs require more comfort than other critters - so a dry warm place to curl up at night is a must. You don't want to raise pigs in a place they can't get dry or warm in (there is no such thing as swamp pork).

Pig age is usually around 7-9 months old when slaughtered, and I get pigs around 8-12 weeks of age so you can expect to have them in your lives a full season. Most people get feeder pigs in the spring and feed until fall for colder weather butchering.

Hope this helps, other readers will pitch in too!

May 8, 2014 at 11:19 AM  
Blogger Jenna said...

Also, I HIGHLY suggest the book Living With Pigs as a starter book for folks thinking about raising backyard pork.

May 8, 2014 at 11:19 AM  
Blogger Jenna said...

Author's name is Wooster, I think?

May 8, 2014 at 11:19 AM  
Blogger Ohiofarmgirl said...

we got our pigz too! three of them to be named "this one," "that one," and "soon." Soon will be.. you know soon because all i can think of is pork chops. he'll be lucky to make it to mid summer...
go meat!
ps i just saw Tanya's question.. check this out for how we do it:

May 8, 2014 at 9:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To paraphrase VanHalen..."Shoat it! Shoat it! Shoat it out loud!"

May 9, 2014 at 11:06 AM  
Blogger Tanya T said...

Thanks for all the great information. We have stalls in the barn where we can keep them warm and dry. Do you need to maintain their feet or teeth? Another farm girl told me she remembers her father cutting the pigs tusks but I guess it depends on the type of pig you get...

May 9, 2014 at 1:41 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

Tanya: I think if you are maintaining a breeding herd you need to worry about such things, but I only raise pigs for a few months and just for slaughter. Teeth aren't an issue, nor are tusks, with 6-9 month old pigs that are either female or castrated.

May 12, 2014 at 9:08 AM  

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