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Plowing with Pigs

May 21st, 2013

Last week, two new members joined the Chiot’s Run family. They will be put to good use eating up the extra veggies from the garden and scraps from the kitchen. They’ll also be utilized to work up new garden areas and to clear some of our wooded areas of it’s underbrush.
piggies 4
piggies 1
piggies 2
piggies 5
piggies 3
So far, we’re really enjoying having them around. They’ve already come in very handy at clearing out the freezer of any food that was a little past prime for human consumption. This week, we’ll be putting up an electric fence for them and setting them free into the areas they’ll be in charge of clearing.

Have you ever kept a hog?

16 Comments to “Plowing with Pigs”
  1. Joan on May 21, 2013 at 5:26 am

    I’ve never had a pig but know lots of people that have. The neatest thing I’ve seen done with pigs is having them uproot stumps. I had an uncle who had cleared some land for pasture, and he would take a crowbar to make holes around the stump he wanted uprooted, then pour grain down into the holes. In no time those pigs would have those stumps completely cleaned out so that he could remove them. I don’t know if this is something that is commonly done, but I think it’s a great way to put pigs to work!

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  2. Mich on May 21, 2013 at 6:06 am

    Yes, we used to buy in Gloucester old spot weaners and rear them for the freezer. Great at clearing ground and yummy to eat :)
    We also had a pair of pot bellied pigs as pets!

    Reply to Mich's comment

  3. Brenda on May 21, 2013 at 6:32 am

    Oh goodness, how cute, I love pigs

    Reply to Brenda's comment

  4. Ann on May 21, 2013 at 6:56 am

    We raised feeder pigs last year and now ours resides in the freezer. We did enjoy them but had trouble with keeping the mud down in the area they lived in. We had 2 pigs in a pen that was 32ft sq which is good sized by many pig enclosure standards. And it was sloped which should have kept at least the upper area dry so that is where we built their shelter. But no matter how much hay we put in, the lower area just became a bog that the poor piggies could barely wade thru. And we couldn’t manage to get in and clean it after about 5 months. So we took them to slaughter a bit on the early side and are going to wait to do another batch til we figure out how to make it just a bit dryer for them. We are also considering enlarging the area by at least double so maybe it will give them more dry space.

    But we did think they were fun to watch grow and they were very friendly to us. The meat is very good and we think we about broke even on our cost. And now most of the hard structure is in place to do it again so it will be cheaper next time. And yes, they will eat almost anything. They love acorns, cornstalks, the greens from sweet potatoes, ect, ect, ect.

    Reply to Ann's comment

  5. Melissa on May 21, 2013 at 7:29 am

    Love your piggies! You are going to love having your own bacon, sausage and pork chops! And I’m sure you’ll know what to do with all the beautiful lard that comes off of them (so many people have no clue! ) My husband is on the way to the processor right now with two of ours, can’t wait for more sausage. And in a month from now our guinea hogs should be weaned and ready to come live with us! I really can’t wait, I think guinea hogs are going to be fun!

    Reply to Melissa's comment

    • Susy on May 21, 2013 at 8:27 am

      I can’t wait to get a few guinea hogs. I’m planning on getting guineas next.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  6. Chas on May 21, 2013 at 7:56 am

    They are adorable!!! I haven’t had a pig myself, but we had some when we were young. I don’t remember much about them except that my grandpa had them up in a small pen and they didn’t get a chance to do much. I knew they needed more room. I have a good place for them, but I don’t have good fences for them yet. We don’t have any electricity going out to the pasture, so electric fencing wouldn’t work unless we were to get a solar panel. That’s a bit pricey. Working towards that day though. :)

    Reply to Chas's comment

  7. kristin @ going country on May 21, 2013 at 8:57 am

    No, and I really don’t want any. Unfortunately, I think I’m in the minority at my house and there will be pigs in our future. I do love to eat pork, though . . .

    Reply to kristin @ going country's comment

  8. laura on May 21, 2013 at 9:07 am

    They’re so cute! I’ve never had one but I did spend a couple days taking care of a baby goat who’s mama didn’t want to take care of her.

    Reply to laura's comment

  9. Elyse on May 21, 2013 at 11:06 am

    I echo Laura: they are so cute! We haven’t had pigs, but I’ve been fascinated with them since I started listening to the Chicken Thistle Farm podcasts. My friend says acorn-fed pigs are a delicacy, and we have plenty of acorns!

    Reply to Elyse's comment

  10. Donna B. on May 21, 2013 at 11:50 am

    Eeeeee~ Congrats you two, this is an exciting addition to your family!
    [Gahhhhh they’re so cute…!]

    Reply to Donna B.'s comment

  11. judym on May 21, 2013 at 11:55 am

    I’d love to have a couple. They sure would come in handy clearing the brush all along our creeks.

    Reply to judym's comment

  12. KimH on May 21, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    What little cuties you have there.. My brother raised a coupe hogs for 4H.. They’re cutle little thangs.. and they taste good oo. ;)

    Reply to KimH's comment

  13. Jennifer Fisk on May 21, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    I’ve never had pigs but would like to. Perhaps your experiences will be an inspiration as to how easy it is.

    Reply to Jennifer Fisk's comment

  14. Victoria in CT on May 23, 2013 at 9:51 am

    Aren’t you worried that coyotes or wolves might get them? Or, do you house them at night?

    Reply to Victoria in CT's comment

    • Susy on May 23, 2013 at 10:36 am

      They have a small house, one that is open on one side. We have them surrounded by an electric fence, that should keep them safe from predation.

      Reply to Susy's comment

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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