A few questions...ideas?

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by LuckyGRanch, Oct 5, 2004.

  1. LuckyGRanch

    LuckyGRanch Well-Known Member

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    How soon is a Boar well....functional? :rolleyes:

    We purchased a few feeder piggies this summer.

    Well, it started with just one and one pig isn't a "good thing". So, I brought home 2 more. One of the 2 is the cutest little thing (or was...). It also turned out to be a "she" so, having 2 young children who have grown accustomed to animals of the female variety being spared the trip to the butcher...I decided to purchase an intact weener of the male variety! :eek:

    Cute "little" female will be old enough to breed by Feb 1st or so. How old before the boars are generally old enough to be of service?

    I have been told by some that the meat doesn't really take on a strong well - Boary taste until they're a year or so. Is this infact true or should I follow the "I want to castrate my big pig" thread and then feed him for another month or so before slaughter?

    My thought is that I would raise the boar long enough to service the female for our one set of piglets and then slaughter and start with a new boar weener for the next breeding if all goes well the first time around. The plan being that we wouldn't just be wasting feed on the Boar but basically raising him to slaughter weight, allowing him to breed the female and then starting over again.

    I'm thinking that as thrifty as most homesteaders are, this probably isn't a good plan or I would have seen others doing the same thing. :confused:
     
  2. uncle Will in In.

    uncle Will in In. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If you get aweaner now, he should be a couple months old if he weighs over 40 lbs. He would be old enough to breed at 5 months, which would be by the first of Febuary. Your gilt will probably start cycling before she is 5 months old. How old is she now? As for eating an intact boar, there are many on here who do and say its fine. Since I never butchered one, and never will, I guess I'm not qualified to make a judgment about it.
    One little point to watch is the gilts weight after she is bred. She needs high quality feed, but not so much that she gets real fat. A fat sow doesn't make as good a mother as a medium weight one. They tend to flop down on top the little pigs, and are to lazy to get off of it. I've seen big sows lay on one of their pigs that would be squealing his head off, and she'd ignor it completely.
     

  3. LuckyGRanch

    LuckyGRanch Well-Known Member

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    Thanks!

    My sow (called a gilt until when??) will be plenty big by Feb. 1st. I just figured on Feb 1st because I don't want to be farrowing for the very first time when it's still sub zero up here!! I did it with lots of goats last year and it's NO fun getting up 2-3X/night when it's -20! :no:

    The little boar is probably 40-50# right now.

    So some folks do eat boars. Guess we'll just have to give it a try and see if we will! ;) If it works and tastes ok, I figure this is a way to avoid "keeping" a boar around just to breed. We'll just keeping raising one long enough to breed our sow and then put him in the freezer. Now, if we don't like the taste...that shoots that whole plan! :eek:
     
  4. uncle Will in In.

    uncle Will in In. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    My stepdad always bought a young boar big enough to breed, and kept him until he got up around 500 lbs. At that weight he could break a sows hip. At that time big boars were worth 9 cents a lb. However a Stag (casterated boar) was worth 11 cents a lb. He would call in two or three neighbors and they would tie ropes on his legs while he was busy eating out of a trough. They threw him down and "hog tied" him while my stepdad cut out nuts 2/3 the size of a football. After he was all healed up he went to the hog market. All that for 2 cents a pound. I wonder if they considered all the meat they lost due to the opperation.
    Many a boar has been cut after he was breeding age.
    A gilt becomes a sow wehe she has pigs. Many farmers still call them gilts until they have the second litter, mostly to show that they are young sows.
    It's similar to a heifer. When she has her first calf, she is a cow, but farmers will call them a first calf heifer. I've even heard them go up to second, and third calf heifers. Now that's streaching her youth to the limit.
     
  5. Boleyz

    Boleyz Prognosticator, Artist

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    I personally wouldn't eat a breeding boar, because the meat STINKS. That's why 600 Lb. boars fetch the big price of 5-6 cents per pound from the packers. They don't want them either. If I were you, and just thinking along the lines of a 1 sow herd, I wouldn't even keep a boar. I'd cut every male in the litter (making them Barrows...I never heard them called "Stags" uncle Will). I'd haul my sow to a neighbor's for breeding. I'd even investigate A.I. (Artificial Insemination) which is used by many breeders, just to keep from having to maintain a boar. Boars are problems. They fight, get huge and break down the sows, eat MOST of the feed, and bring the LOWEST market prices. On top of that, their meat SUX. I know some will argue that point, but trust me...I come from a hog farming region of KY and I don't know ANY farmers that would eat boar meat under any circumstances (and I know a lot of farmers). I've had as many as 100 sows in a farrow to finish confinement operation, and we usually got by with only 2 boars. We tried to keep as few as we could and still keep everything bred.
     
  6. VApigLover

    VApigLover Well-Known Member

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    This string reminds me of something that I did several years ago. I had three sows and a boar hog, the boar hog was about two years old and starting to get really rowdy and a real pain in the butt. I considered slaughtering the guy, but the wifes parents, about everyone I know, stated the meat would smell so bad it would "Run you out of the house" if you cooked it. Needless to say I took this advice and traded that boar to a friend for a chicken house (another failed project for a later story).
    About a week later I visited my friend and my old buddy had taken that boar to slaughter and packed his freezer with the meat. I asked if the meat stunk, he said nope and gave me a large package of pork chops to try. Well as a test I invited all had said the meat would run you out of the house over for a Pork Chop dinner.... Oh it was the best pork chops they've had in years (they said), until I finally told them it was that "Ole Boar" they were eatin, then they said, "That explains that smell?" a little after the fact I thought, but rather humorous to me! Now trading that boar for a poorly built chicken house was a bad deal, but the joke cookin the meat made up for the bad deal. Since I have slaughtered young boars, no older than two and not really tasked hard to breading and have not had any problems with the meat. I consider the taste simular to the difference between a Buck and a Doe(venison), but some may not feel that way.
     
  7. GeorgeK

    GeorgeK Well-Known Member

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    The only boars that lose their nads here do it after they're dead. I've never castrated a boar and everyone says the meat is great. The "smell" is from improper storage of meat. If the meat has gone rancid... "well that'n musta bin a boarhog!" Ask anyone who's eaten a wild boar. There's nobody castrating them, and yet the world over that is considered a delicasy