Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Three Little Piggies

It was so much fun having two pigs, we added another, so now we officially have the three little pigs.

Here they are, in their house of straw.

Even with the cold temperatures we've had this week, the pigs are toasty warm in their little hut. Larry covered the top of it with a large tarp that hangs over the entrances, so the wind is blocked. The pigs often burrow so deep in the straw that all that is visible is their snouts.

This breed of pig is called Blue Butt, which probably makes them the butt of many jokes (ouch).

Hannah got a surprise when she visited the pigs--she found herself on the business end at a time of business. Her face says it all--eeewwww!

We've raised pigs off and on over the years, and my favorite breed has always been the Hampshire. Hamps are black and white belted pigs. We've also raised Durocs and Yorkshires; I liked the Yorks but they seem to have a higher percentage of fat to meat in my experience. Durocs are feisty and we had a lot of trouble with escaped hogs with them. It may have just been the ones we had, but if you have ever chased hogs in the woods in the dark you know it isn't fun.

The Blue Butts are a cross between Hampshires and Yorkshires, and are claimed to have hybrid vigor. Although the hair stays white, the skin underneath will develop "blue" or black markings in the rump and often in the face areas.

My favorite book for dealing with livestock is Veterinary Guide for Animal Owners. (For best prices on this book, go to bestbuys). It's been around for a long time, but the information is useful and succinct.

These two online sources of information about raising pigs on a small farm were the best I located:


City Mouse said...

"Some pig."

I love pigs. Gotta admit, I'm a little afraid of them. (Irrational, I know.) I'd been thinking about eventually getting a few goats instead. Love your blog! Such awesome pics!

Granny Sue said...

Thank you for visiting! I checked out your blog too, and it made me want to visit some of those New York sites. Beautiful.

I wish I had a photo of the mama pig. She's huge, about 600 lbs, and almost came out of her stall when we were loading these. A good mother, that. She made me feel badly about separating her family.

bluemountainmama said...

we also raised pigs on our farm growing up. we had two that were my favorite, named porky and petunia. don't know what breed they were, though.

i love the name 'blue butt'.... that's hilarious!

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