Thinking about pigs

BarnOwl

Loving the herd life
Joined
May 16, 2020
Messages
101
Reaction score
111
Points
133
Location
Southeast Tennessee
Edit to add: To the best of my knowledge, pigs are happier when you have at least two, and three acres should be enough land. We have five acres, but the pig field is around 1/2 acre. I probably won't have pigs after this year as the breeder I get them from is taking a break from farming, and I'm most likely going to focus on just goats and chickens for a while. But if I was going to keep the pigs long term, I would probably divide the pig field so that I could rotate their field.
 

Muffin

Exploring the pasture
Joined
Mar 9, 2019
Messages
4
Reaction score
10
Points
18
Pure kunekune pigs are very docile, friendly, and wonderful to have around. They are herd animals, so you’d want at least two. That goes with any herd animal. They are happier that way. Kunekune don’t root as much, but they tend to be more like grazers. I call them “little lawnmowers.” They also don’t need a lot of land, so what you will have would be enough.
 

Ridgetop

Herd Master
Joined
Mar 13, 2015
Messages
3,408
Reaction score
9,768
Points
503
Location
Shadow Hills, CA
The reason that the UK does not allow the feeding of kitchen waste to livestock is mainly from the huge "mad cow" outbreak some years ago. It was discovered that a lot of livestock feed contained animal by products in it. Animal by products in feed, when they are from infected animals can cause disease in the animals it is fed to. Scrapie and bovine spongiform encephalopathy (mad cow) disease is not killed by heat so the infectious agents are present in the milled feed if a diseased animal is rendered in livestock feed. The BSE outbreak in the UK caused the loss of most herds and an enormous financial loss to British farmers. Cattle herds were destroyed because unlike a ot of diseases BSE not be tested for without killing the suspected host animal and examining the brain.

I agree that if you don't plan to eat them do not raise pigs. If you want to have something that will eat your kitchen garbage use chickens. We have raised a lot of hogs over the past years for the Fair and for home consumption. Pigs are omnivores and will eat everything you choose give them including meat scraps, dead rabbits, chickens, etc. In the 20's and 30's a lot of gangsters are reputed to have kept farms as well as other businesses that would cover up the disposal of human remains. Hogs will eat people. When my children were small they were forbidden to go into the pig pen particularly when we had multiple hogs in one pen. If you have only one pig they get fairly friendly. However, they grow fast and are hard to handle if you have no experience due to the fact that there is nothing to grab hold of on a hog. The best, and time honored, way to grab and pick up young pigs is by the back legs. If you are removing them from the mother to give shots, notch ears, etc. when held upside down by the rear legs you have control of their bodies and they stop the ear splitting screaming that so enrages the mama. They are over 300 lbs. at slaughter time which can be as young as 3 months after buying your weaner pig just off it's mother so can not be grabbed that way then. A standard pig will keep growing forever - the "giant" hogs you see at carnivals are just hogs that have been kept for years and have kept growing to 900 to 1000 lbs. We don't like pork enough to raise hogs for ourselves now.

Chickens will also eat meat scraps, including dead chickens, rabbits, etc. I used to throw any rabbit kits that died to the chickens and they would eagerly gobble them up. If your chickens are not interested in scratching through your kitchen scraps, you are probably overfeeding them. Cut back on their feed and they will eagerly gobble up the kitchen scraps. You will also cut your feed bill a bit too by decreasing the amount of chicken feed you feed.
 

SpotTheCat

Chillin' with the herd
Joined
Feb 12, 2021
Messages
11
Reaction score
35
Points
46
The reason that the UK does not allow the feeding of kitchen waste to livestock is mainly from the huge "mad cow" outbreak some years ago. It was discovered that a lot of livestock feed contained animal by products in it. Animal by products in feed, when they are from infected animals can cause disease in the animals it is fed to. Scrapie and bovine spongiform encephalopathy (mad cow) disease is not killed by heat so the infectious agents are present in the milled feed if a diseased animal is rendered in livestock feed. The BSE outbreak in the UK caused the loss of most herds and an enormous financial loss to British farmers. Cattle herds were destroyed because unlike a ot of diseases BSE not be tested for without killing the suspected host animal and examining the brain.

I agree that if you don't plan to eat them do not raise pigs. If you want to have something that will eat your kitchen garbage use chickens. We have raised a lot of hogs over the past years for the Fair and for home consumption. Pigs are omnivores and will eat everything you choose give them including meat scraps, dead rabbits, chickens, etc. In the 20's and 30's a lot of gangsters are reputed to have kept farms as well as other businesses that would cover up the disposal of human remains. Hogs will eat people. When my children were small they were forbidden to go into the pig pen particularly when we had multiple hogs in one pen. If you have only one pig they get fairly friendly. However, they grow fast and are hard to handle if you have no experience due to the fact that there is nothing to grab hold of on a hog. The best, and time honored, way to grab and pick up young pigs is by the back legs. If you are removing them from the mother to give shots, notch ears, etc. when held upside down by the rear legs you have control of their bodies and they stop the ear splitting screaming that so enrages the mama. They are over 300 lbs. at slaughter time which can be as young as 3 months after buying your weaner pig just off it's mother so can not be grabbed that way then. A standard pig will keep growing forever - the "giant" hogs you see at carnivals are just hogs that have been kept for years and have kept growing to 900 to 1000 lbs. We don't like pork enough to raise hogs for ourselves now.

Chickens will also eat meat scraps, including dead chickens, rabbits, etc. I used to throw any rabbit kits that died to the chickens and they would eagerly gobble them up. If your chickens are not interested in scratching through your kitchen scraps, you are probably overfeeding them. Cut back on their feed and they will eagerly gobble up the kitchen scraps. You will also cut your feed bill a bit too by decreasing the amount of chicken feed you feed.
Thank you!
 

Lizzy733

Overrun with beasties
Joined
Oct 31, 2021
Messages
46
Reaction score
113
Points
76
Location
Northland, New Zealand
Pure kunekune pigs are very docile, friendly, and wonderful to have around. They are herd animals, so you’d want at least two. That goes with any herd animal. They are happier that way. Kunekune don’t root as much, but they tend to be more like grazers. I call them “little lawnmowers.” They also don’t need a lot of land, so what you will have would be enough.
I wish my two were little lawnmowers - they are surprisingly picky eaters and have turned their nose up at fresh fruit, veggies and herbs.

They love their kibble and clover, have free access to the outdoors, but prefer to stay underfoot.

Our boys are still babies, so hopefully they'll expand their palate a bit. We bought them to help with the orchard windfall, but they seem to enjoy pottering around the house and garden so far.
 

Latest posts

Top