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Introducing and feeding pigs of different sizes

Discussion in 'Behaviors & Handling Techniques - Pigs' started by Midge, Mar 21, 2018.

  1. Mar 21, 2018
    Midge

    Midge Just born

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    We live in Hawaii and keep wild caught Polynesian pigs (they’re a big nuisance to most farmers) in a mobile pasture system. As such we get pigs at different times so they’re all different sizes and ages. We started with a set of 3 siblings: two barrows and a gilt, but we had to separate the female and put her with another sow because the boys weren’t letting her get enough food. She holds her own a little better with this other sow, but she’s significantly smaller and remaining so because she eats slowly and then the sow takes over her bowl when the other ones empty. I’d like to simplify my pasture system to put all 6 pigs back in one larger pasture together. My main worry is, even once they’ve gotten over the introductory fighting, how will I make sure each pig gets enough food? There are two much smaller weaned females needing to be included with these 4 larger pigs, and I can’t imagine how they’ll defend their bowls from the barrows.
    Additionally, every post I’ve read says that pigs just fight for the first few days. We introduced a baby male who’d gotten separated from his family into the pen with the small gilt and larger sow. The sow DESTROYED him. Almost. I finally made him a small “creep” to get away from her but after a month she still wouldn’t leave him alone at feeding time. He actually died (probably unrelated) so this specific case is not a concern any longer, but in the future??

    Are some pigs just bullies? Are there better ways to feed?

    Thanks everyone!
    Edited to add: the pigs are currently in 3 separate 16x16 hog panel enclosures, 2 pigs in each, that get moved every 3-4 days. They often are right next to each other so the pigs can “talk” and touch noses, so they’ve kind of met.
     
  2. Apr 9, 2018
    Farmer Connie

    Farmer Connie True BYH Addict

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    I have a separate feed station every pig. I have seven breeders. They don't like to share.. thus the term.. greedy pig.
    When I raise feeders, the get separate bowls. Buddies they all are until feeding time. Then it is growl city..