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I have to make a desion now as to whether or not butcher my sow. I originally purchased the pigs with the intension of selling them off for meat. I have one sow in this bunch and am considering keeping her for one litter then butcher her. I am a comlete novice about breeding and farrowing and need some advice on these matters. A few questions I have are:

Do I take her to the male or does he come here, and the pros and cons of this impregnation method.
Artificial insemination alternative - pros and cons? How much does it cost?

I intend to do more research on farrowing so won't ask anything out this area right now.

Thanks in advance.
 

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I'd go the A.I. route if you have no boar. A.I. with pigs is simple and starightforward. There is a spray called SOA (Sex Odour Aerosol) which is made in Canada by Intervet. Spray it in front of her and she will stand completely still, that is when you insert the straw. If you choose a breed but not a particular stud, the price of semen with shipping overnight is about $85- at least here in the U.S. It is so easy to work with a sow in heat when she is standing that I wouldn't even consider a boar unless I owned one. You'll have to AI her two days in a row and know when she is going to heat for it to work right. Good luck.
 

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I use the wildflock system, ok for pigs, wildherd system. Let the pigs have 24/7 access to eachother, adequate pasture, and shelter, daily treats and let them breed as they wish, but watch their behavior. If a boar is mean to the piglets, he gets invited to dinner, if a sow is mean to her piglets she gets invited to dinner. If you find good protective, gentle parents, keep them. they can breed for years
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Boy I really like both of your ideas, in fact I will use Marcia's suggestion this year and George K's next year. Thanks guys great advice!
I think of all the farm animals I've had so far, I like the pigs the best. Its been a great learning experience, and the help I've recieved on this board had been a godsend. :D
 

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jackie c said:
Do I take her to the male or does he come here, and the pros and cons of this impregnation method. Artificial insemination alternative - pros and cons? How much does it cost?
We have a boar come by for our four sows. The other farmer likes it as he doesn't have to care for the boar and it is easier for us as we can then hit two heats incase they don't take the first time (they do).

We have to feed the boar for the month or so plus we give the other farmer a piglet from each litter as payment.

We looked into AI but they wanted $125 for the visit plus $25 per pig plus the cost of the semen. Seemed a bit pricey. The boar is more fun. :) And he's a true gentleman. :)

He keeps offering to buy the rest of the litters for $35 for winter pigs and more for spring pigs but so far we haven't sold them that cheap. Still, it's good to know we could unload them if we needed too.

He also knows a _lot_ about pigs and it is great to pickup stuff from talking with him.

So, look around for someone else who keeps pigs and has a boar.

Cheers,

-Walter
in Vermont
 

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When I was growing up we had one boar and three females. Two later, red and white female went to table, all our hogs that were red and white, had attitude problems. We kept our boar away all the time when the females went into heat we put the board with them for a couple of days.

One important thing once whe has the babies you have to put up some kind of barrer be board across the pen high enough the babies can get under what ever you use. Because when mom lays down she may not see the babies and lay on one injuring it or killing it.
 

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carolinabear said:
One important thing once whe has the babies you have to put up some kind of barrer be board across the pen high enough the babies can get under what ever you use. Because when mom lays down she may not see the babies and lay on one injuring it or killing it.
I wonder if this is an issue primarily with sows in pens. Our sows are out on pasture and we've not had any problem with piglets getting laid on. Our sows, although good sized at 350 lbs and well muscled, are also leaner than sows I've seen that were penned. That might have an effect on their agility making the pastured pigs less likely to drop down onto piglets.

-Walter
The first little piggy had her piglets in a house made of stone, the second little piggy had her litter in a next made of straw, and the third little piggy had hers in a house made of sticks... (I'm not kidding! :) Fortunately the big good wolf was there to watch over everyone and keep them safe! http://www.hollygraphicart.com/photoletter2003/images/28.html
 

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Yes at first we had a problem with it. Our hogs had pens in the barn with access to the field. When they had their babies theyed come to the barn pen and have them there.
 
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