I recently purchased two feeder pigs, they are 3 1/2 months old. I've had them for a month and a half. They are very friendly to humans, we pet them and love on them. Yesterday they ate two chickens and today they ate a duck. The other animals go in there because there's always food in the pig pen. I am very distrubed by this. I know they will eat meat. But I was planning on letting them out in to the larger pasture with all the barnyard friends when they got a bit older. Now I wonder if they will be terrorizing everything. Our previous pig was so sweet he let the chickens sleep on him eat out of the food bowl with him. So I am looking for feed back, advice...
I was planning on using the female for breeding but not sure if she has the right temperment now?
I would say they're not getting enough protein, so their taking their protein by force, namely, your chickens. I would up their protein. However, I don't know that will cure the problem, since they already have a taste for the other white meat!
welcome to the world of NATURE, PIGS EAT ANYTHING THEY WANT< weather they have the hightest protien pre made diet or not they will eat what they can catch, pigs SHOULD NOT be housed with ANY other livestock, and you should watch your small children around them as well, we had another poster on here who thought it would be neat to let their 4 year old child go play with the pigs, they soon found out pigs dont play with small soft meaty things, (no the child didnt get eatn but he could have)
dont put human emotions on your live stock thinking they will all get along like a big happy family, other wise Uncle Porker will eat Cousin ChickenLittle and all her friends,
Tiffany, your pigs are penned and will be bored out of their skull - people forget when penning pigs that they are an intelligent animal that needs something to do so any feathered visitor starts off as being a bit of fun and ends up as a meal. I think you will find the problem will disappear once you get them out into a paddock and have room to move, graze, snooze and wallow.
In the 30-odd years I've bred and reared pigs, I've only lost one duck to a boar - and it was well deserved. My dozen ducks would home in on the boar's feed trough when I fed him and finally he lost the plot and crunch. End of one duck. The remaining 11 stayed well clear of his dinner plate after that and there were no more problems. My hens can, but don't, go anywhere near the pigs at feeding time and wait until they have left the trough before they go and scrounge any leavings. It's as though they know not to tempt fate.
Protein levels, calories and general food levels are a question. Do they have enough?
Space is an issue. Are the poultry able to get away? Create a creep. Out on pasture this may not be a problem but in a confined pen it could be an issue.
Boredom may be an issue. See space.
Ages are an issue. Adult chickens are more mobile. Smaller birds are less wary and less able to run away.
One trick is to make an electric chicken. Take a dead chicken, place it on an insulating platform such as a bucket, connect it with fencing wire to the hot wire of your electric fence. The pigs quickly learn to avoid chickens.
Conditioning may be an issue. If these pigs did not grow up co-grazing around poultry then they may not work now around chickens as well.
Feeding may be an issue. Some people feed dead chickens to their pigs. Perhaps that is what they got before they came to you.
Temperament may be an issue. Some pigs are more predatory. Don't breed them if you don't want that trait.
Family story. When we lived in Slinger, WI it was a diverse farm. Dairy, sheep, feeding out feeder pigs, egg hens and boilers. The boilers were in a pen next to the pigs. Every couple of days a headless chicken would be found in that pen. It was thrown over the fence to the hog lot. One day dad noticed a pig take a mouthful of feed from the feeder and place it next to the fence and lie down. When a chicken put its head through, the pig lunged, bitting off the head. The headless chicken then ran/flopped around until it died somewhere in the pen. You can guess the pig waiting for the dead chicken to be tossed in the pig pen. This little piggy went to market solved that problem.
As others have said, space and food competition is the answer. We have several chickens that live permanently with our pigs and have never had a problem. As you can see in the picture, the chickens and pigs eat side by side and I've even seen a chicken sleeping on a pig! Pigs need space; I have some tips on my website at http://homegrownacres.com/pigs.html.
I had problems with the pigs pulling the chickens OUT of the fencing and eating them! Until I moved the pigs a good 100 feet away and penned them so they couldn't go near the chickens. I had my pigs roaming my whole acreage (10 acres) so I don't see how it's a space issue. I only have two feeder pigs.