Our first trial with pigs started in January 2015 when we fostered two pregnant sows that were a Duroc/Tamworth Mix. We managed them on a rotating pasture/woodlot paddock system. Both sows farrowed large litters and in March 2015 we had 22 piglets running all over the property. This was a valuable experience that taught us so much about pigs and inspired us to continue our pig adventures. “Miss Piggy” and “Papa Pancake” a breeding pair of American Guinea Hogs, arrived on the farm in April 2015 after our previous piglets were sold and the mama’s (Lucy and Ethel) went back to their original farm.
We were blessed when Miss Piggy farrowed her first litter of 5 healthy piglets, 4 males and 1 female, in May 2015. We allowed them to raise the babies as ‘a family’ meaning we did not separate the mom and babies from the boar. We loved raising American Guinea Hogs because they basically take care of themselves and are more manageable for our purposes due to their smaller stature and less destructive nature when compared to traditional breeds. However, they are also very smart and made us crazy dealing with fencing issues, so eventually this past winter they all made it to the freezer and now we enjoy sausage every week.
Eventually, I think we will raise pigs again, just not sure when and what breed. We go back and forth on it all the time, but this year (2016) we have decided to shift our focus from raising animals and concentrate on our overall permaculture design and establishing the gardens. Once we feel like our design is in a good place and we plan our our fencing system a little better we will have pigs again at Campbell Family Farm.
Click on our “Pigs” category to read more…