The Pig Arrival
By Gavin Dinnel
Pig arrival day is always an exciting day here at the farm. It is the culmination of hard work that goes into getting our pig pasture ready for the new batch of pigs and it is always a humbling thought to be responsible for the future pork that will end up on people’s plates.
There are a lot of little details that go into making sure we are ready for their arrival. We have to make sure that the grass is trimmed so as not to interfere with the maximum efficiency of the electric fence. We need to make sure that the electric fence is tight and not sagging anywhere and that it is connected to all of the insulators. The water barrels need to be working properly and attached to a fixed point as pigs love to push things around and would certainly knock them over if given the opportunity. Feeders need to be in place and ready with feed.
Once the pigs are here we observe them and make sure they are aware of where everything is. We bungie cord the feeder lids up the first day so they can find the feed easier and will be able to lift the lids up with their heads when I remove the cords. Occasionally we need to teach them how to use the water nipples on the barrels. Pigs are very curious and are able to pick it up pretty quickly. And finally, we have to make sure that the electric fence is working properly and that they learn what that means. We have found that the natural curiosity of the pigs during their exploration will lead them into the electric fence several times each, and after that they usually figure out that they shouldn’t touch it.
Pigs are relatively easy to raise. They are hardy, grow quickly and taste great! A pig can reach butchering weight at only 6 months from birth! Have you thought about raising pigs? Are you ready to take the plunge? Feel free to like and follow my farm page at Dinner Time Farm to join the discussion and feel free to ask any questions you have about raising pigs! Your question might be featured in a future blog post!