Amazing little rototillers!!

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by kath2003, Nov 3, 2004.

  1. kath2003

    kath2003 Well-Known Member

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    I can not beleive how quickly my four new piglets tore up a 1/4 acre pen! They completely over turned every spot of grass.I just got them home late Sunday night.Now will they still enjoy being in there and just keep turning over the earth??WOW,these guys are awsome!! :eek:
     
  2. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    They'll try to get to the greener grass on the other side of the fence after a while. When you mow or weed, toss the stuff into them to keep them satisfied. Yeap, a little pig is strong on manual labor for gardening. Every home should have at least one :)
     

  3. uncle Will in In.

    uncle Will in In. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If you had an old sow you could get the really deep tillage.
     
  4. kath2003

    kath2003 Well-Known Member

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    How deep are we talking about? I thought what they did was deep!
     
  5. P&B

    P&B Member

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    My husband and I are new to this. We have a small acreage in CT and I want chickens, but am afraid of snakes. My suggested I get one or two hogs to keep th snakes at bay, but I have a few concerns.

    My first concern is my yard. My backyard is roughly an acre of nice green grass for my children to play. The rest is surrounded by 1.5 acres of woods. I would want to let the pigs roam in the woods during the day and keep them penned at night. How do I keep them in the woods and prevent them from destroying my lovely yard and play area.

    Secondly, I've heard that pigs can get vicious. I have young children. How do I keep them from attacking my children when the hogs are foraging during the day. Also, how do I keep them from attacking me and my husband when I am cleaning their pen?

    I'm very open to suggestions.

    Thank you.
     
  6. uncle Will in In.

    uncle Will in In. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The only time hogs attack is when they have little babies and you are to close to them while they are still tiny in the nest. Many mother hogs won't attack even then. Old boars can be dangerous with the tusks that they grow out each side of their mouth. In your situation, I can't see you keeping breeding sows or boars. Hogs require a good fence to keep them anywhere. If you get an outdoor dog he would very often be better than a pig for ridding your property of snakes. A well mowed lawn helps keep them at bay also.
     
  7. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    Kathy, aren't they amazing? I have some in my garden right now. They are working some old straw bales into the soil for me. :)


    When I clean out the barns, I put my tractor scoop piles of manure in the garden. Then I place a handful of grain on each pile and turn the chickens in.
    They scratch and throw the stuff faster than I could with a pitchfork! :D
     
  8. kath2003

    kath2003 Well-Known Member

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    Its just incredible!Now will they be alright all winter in all that dirt?They have a nice dry house full of hay and straw,but the pen is shot already. :no:
     
  9. dla

    dla Well-Known Member

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    I have also been pleasantly surprised at the rototillling going on - DH loves the attack on English Ivy (eating up the side of out barn) and poison ivy.

    But we are concerned about too much of a good thing in that area. But how do you move these guys? We were going to put them (six piggies - have had 'em a month) in a temporary fence around an old garden they could clear. I think they are a little past the "pick them up by the hind legs" size. You'll laugh, but we tried a dog harness - Oh my goodness, it was funny, but not successful.

    Gal who shows pigs says you can train them to follow you, but with half of them going to slaughter, it it worth it?
     
  10. kath2003

    kath2003 Well-Known Member

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    Ya know I was watching them this morning eating some corn cobs I threw to them and they sure eat alot of dirt.Now I know they are pigs an all,but is dirt ok?Seems like a goofy question but I'm wondering.They sure eat alot of it. :confused:
     
  11. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    dla, ours will follow a feed bucket. I've used potato chip trails before too. :)

    Kathy, the dirt won't hurt them. They find lots of goodies buried in the soil too to eat.
     
  12. kath2003

    kath2003 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks cowgirlone,thats kind of what I thought but just wanted to check.They are just to funny.
     
  13. UpstateNY

    UpstateNY Active Member

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    I would like to set my pigs to tilling but am not sure of how to build a portable pig proof fence for them. I have a couple acres that I would like turned and readied for grass seeding but how to contain them is stumping me. any suggestions?
     
  14. farmy

    farmy Well-Known Member

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    We have our 20 pigs in a mobile electric fence that we move once a week. Works like a charm.


     
  15. DreamingBig

    DreamingBig Well-Known Member

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    In CT snakes are not a big concern. Here's an article on the two poisonous ones found there, both endangered, therefore rare. http://www.bio.umass.edu/biology/conn.river/wtrsnake.html Any other snake around, such as gopher and garden snakes, would be very beneficial, eating rodents, snails, destructive bugs, etc. Certainly no harm to you or your kids, and very afraid of you, so you'd probably never see them. :) And like all wild animnals, they suffer from dwindling habitat. I grew up in MA, was outdoors ALL day long, in the woods and fields and up trees, and only saw one snake, a harmless king snake, my entire childhood. Lots of people have a fear of snakes. If you could take your kids someplace like a nature exhibit where they and you could get acquainted with some, I think you'll find they're pretty cool critters! Chris
     
  16. DreamingBig

    DreamingBig Well-Known Member

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    GeorgeK talks about this on his website; he keeps potbellies because they're so manageable. http://www.windridgefarm.us I really like his approach to livestock and hope to emulate him when I get my place.
     
  17. bare

    bare Head Muderator

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    One thing you'll want to remember when you move your roto-rooters to new pasture, is to make certain to plant a good cover crop. I like to use winter rye.

    If you don't get something on the ground quickly, you'll likely end up with a weedier patch than you started with.
     
  18. highlands

    highlands Walter Jeffries Staff Member Supporter

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    Electric fence works well but first train them to the electric for a few weeks in a solid pen with electric around the inside. Poultry netting works well too. I peg the middle of the sections down to the ground if the ground is bumpy. It is very important to keep it continuously electrified as they can detect when the electricity is off, possibly by listening, possibly by feeling the static charge on their nose bristles. I've watched a sow go up to the fence and get real close as she appeared to be testing it. If it was off she went through, if it was on she backed away without ever getting zapped.

    Cheers,

    -Walter
    Sugar Mtn Farm
    in Vermont
     
  19. kath2003

    kath2003 Well-Known Member

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    Well,they did it,they got out of the pen and tilled up a whole lot of land:( They just keep digging and digging and digging.They are the energizer piggies. :no:
     
  20. highlands

    highlands Walter Jeffries Staff Member Supporter

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    Kathy, do you have electric fence inside the pen? I would put a tight wire a couple of inches above the ground around the inside and then another wire above that by about 2". With this it is also important there isn't anywhere they can stand on a rock and go through the fence thus not being grounded.

    The other option is really, really tight strong fencing. I've succeeded without electric using heavy rocks and logs (12' long x 12" dia.) around the perimeter. Hard wood pallets are pretty good too.

    Electric is the easiest. Even teen agers can be trained to it. :)

    Cheers,

    -Walter
    in Vermont