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Author Topic: Recommended breed for new pig owner  (Read 312 times)

Zoe76

  • Joined Oct 2020
Recommended breed for new pig owner
« on: October 13, 2020, 09:35:15 pm »
Hi,

We are a family of 5, 2 adults and 3 children (one is vegetarian).

I would like to get a couple of weaners to raise and use for meat. When would be the best time to buy and what recommendations do people have a breed?

I look forward to your advice.

Zoe  :)


bj_cardiff

  • Joined Feb 2017
  • Carmarthenshire
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2020, 09:53:34 pm »
I wouldn't be too stuck on a particular breed. I would look through preloved, or another online site for breeders local to you and contact them saying that you would like to buy some weaners and could you come and see them please. Your under no oblagation to buy and usually the breeder will be happy to give you all the advice you need and you can see the adult pigs and get a feel for how well they are kept.

I've had, Tamworth, Oxford Sandy and Black, Welsh, Berkshire, Mangalitza and comercial crosses, all of them tasted wonderful. I found the Tamworth and Oxford Sandy and Black's were all so distinctive and individual it was hard to distance yourself from them when their time was up. I would also go for all boys, there is always a temptation to keep girls if you get too attached. Definately all the same sex and try and get similarly sized pigs so they all grow at the same rate.

I would wait until the spring as they will make a very big mess of any outdoor runs and unless you have the best draining soil it can become unhealthy for them

Enjoy them, their are wonderful

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2020, 12:41:05 am »
Yep, buy in spring and send off in or by October.  Pigs are not happy on wet, cold mud, so this regime works well.

And I would also agree that getting nice healthy animals locally, from someone friendly who can give you some advice if you have any issues, would be the best.  Breed much less important.
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

harmony

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2020, 08:07:33 am »
Generally speaking people recommend the breed they keep as the best  :innocent:


Keeping a native breed on the RBST watchlist supports a breeder and a pig breed for the future. There is plenty of information out there about the different breeds.




Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2020, 08:51:09 am »
Breed much less important.


But in general, floppy eared breeds are more docile than pointy eared breeds, right?  (Because they can't see where they're going, for one thing!  ;D
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

harmony

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2020, 09:22:06 am »
Breed much less important.


But in general, floppy eared breeds are more docile than pointy eared breeds, right?  (Because they can't see where they're going, for one thing!  ;D


Generally speaking and traditional breeds more docile than modern but some still have semi or pricked ears. Moderns grow more quickly, tend to finish with lower fat levels. Some traditionals can only be taken to smaller finishing weights. Some look lean but will have higher fat levels.


You will probably have higher fat levels on your first pigs because you'll fatten and not finish and it's something you perfect over time.


People encourage you to keep weaners over the summer and to be fair generally speaking all animals are easier/more pleasant to keep over warmer, longer hours of daylight but if you want burgers and sausages for summer bbq's then keep them over the winter. You don't have to have a muddy paddock if you have buildings.

macgro7

  • Joined Feb 2016
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2020, 11:02:38 am »
Hi,

We are a family of 5, 2 adults and 3 children (one is vegetarian)
What's the best meat breed for the vegetarian person?  ;D
Growing loads of fruits and vegetables! Raising dairy goats, chickens, ducks, geese rabbits and a little boy on 1/2 acre in the middle of the city of Leicester, using permaculture methods.

Zoe76

  • Joined Oct 2020
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2020, 12:34:08 pm »
I know! I didn't feel comfortable saying we were a family of 4!  ;)

Richmond

  • Joined Sep 2020
  • Norfolk
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2020, 01:08:30 pm »
Agree with what others have said. We get our weaners in late May as a rule and run them through to October so they can take care of all the fallen fruit and overgrown courgettes from the veg patch. And the longer summer days will mean you get to spend more time with them - sitting in the pen scratching tummies etc. We have had pigs literally throw themselves down at our feet to be scratched whenever we went to see them. They are great time wasters ........
Even if ultimately you are going to eat an animal I think it's important to enjoy having them, otherwise the care of them just becomes a chore. Fortunately it's very easy to fall in love with pigs. Our last lot (OSBs btw) were soooo gorgeous and tame and trusting I found it particularly hard to send them off. They ran up the trailer ramp chasing an apple I threw in without any hesitation. Our butcher (who collected them) said he'd never seen pigs load so fast in his life!

Possum

  • Joined Feb 2012
  • Somerset
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2020, 03:57:12 pm »
I agree with other replies. Buy them in the spring. It is much more enjoyable looking after them in the summer, particularly in the your first year. Use this winter to do all your preparations - housing, fencing, food supply, transport, abattoir. Do you have anyone who will look after them if you have to go away for a weekend or if one of you is ill?

Zoe76

  • Joined Oct 2020
Re: Recommended breed for new pig owner
« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2020, 06:57:06 pm »
Thanks again for the wealth of advice. I am going to wait until the spring a get the weaners then.  :pig:

 

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