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Author Topic: Weaners wanted  (Read 5136 times)

Kaye

  • Joined Jun 2009
Weaners wanted
« on: June 02, 2009, 06:00:59 pm »
Hi

This is my first time keeping pigs  - have read up a little but am sure there is a huge amount I dont know. Looking for some help on what kind of pig is best for a novice .  What is fair to pay,  where feed merchants are (wondered if same as horse feedmerchants?)

I want to keep them for two reasons firstly for the freezer and secondly to clear some scrub land I have  .  Am presently ensuring fencing is robust enough and filling in the forms for the government.

Any advice would be very much appreiciated.

HappyHippy

  • Guest
Re: Weaners wanted
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2009, 09:30:46 pm »
Hi Kaye,
Most agricultural feed merchants will supply pig feed (just ring to check) or you may want to grow/make your own. Have a trawl through the pig section - I'm sure there's a post on that very subject.
As for what breed is best  ???
Everyone has their own personal favorites  ;D
Large blacks are chilled out pigs, tamworths (IMO) are a bit mental, some are better for bacon and hams while others are better for pork - but they're all GREAT for churning up ground !
Maybe best to get a couple of cross breed weaners for your first attempt - they don't cost as much as pedigree's, especially if you don't want to go down the breeding route. I paid 30 each for cross breed weaners but I think the pure breeds are upwards of 50 each - depends where you are.
Good luck and do let us know what you end up getting  :pig:

Pigtails

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Scotland
    • 29brawl
Re: Weaners wanted
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2009, 09:38:06 pm »
Hi Kaye,

We have weaners, cross saddleback / gloucester old spot, from 35 each, where are you?
Pigtails

Hilarysmum

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Weaners wanted
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2009, 06:59:57 am »
Kaye cross breeds are great, would avoid the factory farm type pig for outdoor raising.  Pigs with ears that flop over their eyes tend to be easier to manage.  Although I started with Tamworths and am still a great fan, you do need to be fit to keep them (imo).  Welsh are starting to become very popular.  Whatever you have enjoy.  A good book for the beginner is Starting with Pigs by Andy Case.

Farmer

  • Joined May 2009
  • Sidway, Staffordshire
    • Farmeats.com
Re: Weaners wanted
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2009, 07:14:13 am »
Hi Kaye,
If you just want a couple of pigs for the freezer then don't go to the expense of buying pure blood stock. I would suggest you try to get hold of cross bred Gloucester Old Spot - these are usually very quiet, friendly and manageable pigs and you will get reasonable quality pork, sausage and bacon from them - buy gilts not boars, they will be less trouble and you will avoid any chance of boar taint in the meat - if you want the land cleared quickly, buy growers not weaners and expect to pay around 40 - 45 each (weaners should cost you less but will take longer to clear the land and grow to freezer size).

Pig feed is usually available to purchase in either 20/25kg bags from most feed merchants - but if you intend feeding on the land I would suggest you find one that can supply 'large rolls' rather than nuts or meal - its easier for the pigs to eat and doesen't get lost in the mud! Cost varies from about 5.40 - 6.00 a bag in my area (its cheaper to buy direct from the feed producer but if you only want to buy a little at a time try and find a friendly pig keeper who will sell you some of his/hers).

I hope this has been useful, but I'm sure there is a lot more advice available in the forum - good luck.

Regards, Farmer
 :farmer:

Pigtails

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Scotland
    • 29brawl
Re: Weaners wanted
« Reply #5 on: June 14, 2009, 06:10:56 pm »
Hi Kaye,
If you just want a couple of pigs for the freezer then don't go to the expense of buying pure blood stock. I would suggest you try to get hold of cross bred Gloucester Old Spot - these are usually very quiet, friendly and manageable pigs and you will get reasonable quality pork, sausage and bacon from them - buy gilts not boars, they will be less trouble and you will avoid any chance of boar taint in the meat - if you want the land cleared quickly, buy growers not weaners and expect to pay around 40 - 45 each (weaners should cost you less but will take longer to clear the land and grow to freezer size).

Pig feed is usually available to purchase in either 20/25kg bags from most feed merchants - but if you intend feeding on the land I would suggest you find one that can supply 'large rolls' rather than nuts or meal - its easier for the pigs to eat and doesen't get lost in the mud! Cost varies from about 5.40 - 6.00 a bag in my area (its cheaper to buy direct from the feed producer but if you only want to buy a little at a time try and find a friendly pig keeper who will sell you some of his/hers).

I hope this has been useful, but I'm sure there is a lot more advice available in the forum - good luck.

Regards, Farmer
 :farmer:

Rare breeds don't have "boar taint", we keep ours intact with all of their facilities until they are ready for the freezer, never once have we had a tainted boar, just a thought.
Pigtails

Hilarysmum

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Weaners wanted
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2009, 07:15:44 am »
I think boar taint comes mostly from pigs kept indoors, especially in small areas, and close to females.  The boars will naturally become interested in the females and develop that smell when the females come into season . The boar wees and sometimes it splashes up and covers the stomach area; also in small areas they may have to l ie in their output.

Never known boar taint in a free range pig.  Would suggest taking males well out of smelling distance of a female about 3 weeks before killing.  The problem with having females is the urge to keep one for breeding.   

Farmer

  • Joined May 2009
  • Sidway, Staffordshire
    • Farmeats.com
Re: Weaners wanted
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2009, 05:35:50 pm »
Re- boar taint...I've never had a case either, but since I sell all our pork through our own Farm Shop I simply couldn't afford to take any risk...boars are separated on weaning and killed first and as soon as they reach weight; gilts are killed as required or grown on for bacon. Avoidance is often better than regret

farmer
 :farmer:

Hilarysmum

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Weaners wanted
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2009, 07:06:10 am »
This is not an argument for or against keeping males or boar taint - just an observation -

Until very recently (when a pig destined for the freezer impregnated 2 of my breeding sows) we had never castrated males.   We try to send them off around 7 months, although very slow growing have been kept to 12 months.  We keep them well separated from females.  Never had boar taint.

A friend (I have mentioned this before) sent her 18 month old working boar off to abattoir.  NO boar taint.  He was huge. 

I personally have never come across boar taint.  I do know of someone who did, and who said it was a fishy, rancid taste and smell. 

I think its a case of whatever is available or ones own preference.  Its uncommon here for meat boars to be left uncastrated.

 

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