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I am sure s been talked about but I was wondering what age everyone weans piglets and how soon you re bred the sows? Also, what is the process of weaning? Thanks
 

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I've moved down from 10 weeks to 6 weeks. They seem to be ready and the moms are fine getting annoyed with them anyway. I feed the piglets in their creep area then cloae it off when they are inside. Open the gate and have the sows follow me to the next pen. Then shut the gate. I haven't had any problems with them being side by side, usually after the first day they quit paying much attention to each other. Ill turn the boar in with the sows immediately. Dump feed to the sows for the next 7-10 days; they should come into heat in about 3 days. I may try moving a boar in before I wean next time. I know some on here do. All of my sows came back into heat before I weaned at six weeks this last time. I'd prefer to get them bred back ASAP.
 

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I am sure s been talked about but I was wondering what age everyone weans piglets and how soon you re bred the sows? Also, what is the process of weaning? Thanks
I wean at 5 weeks. I put the piglets in a shed pen. I keep them penned up most times for 10 day before turning them back out with the other pigs. The sow is bred 3-6 days after weaning. If not then 21 days after sow was in heat.
 

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We generally wean around six weeks but it can be as early as four weeks and as late as eight weeks depending on situation and season. The sows are generally already with the boars. Some sows rebreed while nursing but most take about three days to dry and then rebreed at seven days. This gives about 2.3 to 3 litters a year. The high number being the line that short gestates and fast rebreeds, the low being more normal.

We're about to wean the south field. We'll herd them down from the mountain pastures and then through a series of fences such that the piglets keep moving and the sows stop and then turn off. This will put the piglets in a tightly fenced area multiple fences away from the sows. The sows will go to a tightly fenced paddock to dry and then in five days return to the boar herds, sorted as to where I want the genetics to flow.

The only time I interfere with their naturally fecund breeding cycle is if I don't want farrowing in about four months such as if there is a big construction project coming up in winter since winter is about 6x more work than the warm seasons. Problem with that is then in ten months I'll have a lull in finishers - I need pigs for market every week.

Breeding now means December piglets which is hard season here. The easy farrowing seasons I would recommend, in our climate USDA Zone 3, are about May (maybe April) through October (maybe November). Varies with the year. Beyond that on either end is mud season which is not good farrowing time and then there's winter. If you want to farrowing year round consider open greenhouses with deep bedding packs on a slight slope for drainage - that create a tempered space. Cold is not as bad as humid. Wind is nasty. Wet cold is the worst.

-Walter
 

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I wean at 3 1/2 to 4 weeks depending on sow and pigs condition. My sows are in a field all the time except 2-5 days before farrowing then I put them in the barn in about a 8x8 stall on concrete with adjacent stall which is accessible only to the piglets. I have found that the pigs begin to draw down the sow quite a bit after 3 weeks and aggravate her, plus I like to get her out in the open again after being penned up.

I then lead her down and put her in with a boar several hundred feet away from the pigs, unless I plan on AI. She is normally bred right back in about 5 days.

Pigs are normally about 20 pounds on average at weaning and about 40 pounds at 6 weeks. They are already eating a little feed before weaning, a commercial pig starter. Sows and boars are fed cob corn, which I grow, along with soybean meal and minerals. They also get pasture, and a few odd vegetables.
 

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I find that the sows do the initial dry up in about three days - that's when the back pressure eases. However if they get re-exposed to piglets nursing them they'll start lactating again. At seven days they re-heat and are very dry by then. We separate piglets for several weeks post weaning because that is the taming time when we socialize them. Sows shift to a new boar herd or rebreeding typically, or stay with the boar herd they're in sometimes. We just did a big weaning and sow rotation this week as well as moving late gestating sows for farrowing to close lush paddocks where I can see and interact with them more easily. The previous group of weaner piglets are now shoats, leaving their weaner training paddock system headed for the far south field after a month of taming.

-Walter
 

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Hi all, I'm new to this. I would like to know at what age can you start breeding the gilts ( hoping that was the right term)


Thank you,
Just1974
 

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Our piglets turned 5 weeks old on Monday and are eating well, both vegetables and commercial pellets. The sow is definitely starting to self-wean them. She normally lies down on her side to let them nurse after feeding time, but the past couple days has been far less accommodating, lying straight up on her belly. She is ready for them to be weaned. Will separate her this weekend when I have more time to keep an eye on everyone.
 

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Hi all, I'm new to this. I would like to know at what age can you start breeding the gilts
I find that gilts take at about eight months and then farrow their first litter at about a year. Occasionally I get a gilt taking at six months. Sex play comes before that but no pregnancies. This is with large farm breeds: Yorkshire, Berkshire, Tamworth, Large Black. I have read there are some breeds that take much younger - minis in particular - so you mileage may vary.

-Walter

PS. Please fill in your location information which makes it easier to answer questions. At the very least your zone. See this thread:

http://www.homesteadingtoday.com/livestock-forums/pigs/505485-please-fill-location-info.html
 
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