How to feed individual portions to 8 sows?

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by Faith Farm, May 20, 2006.

  1. Faith Farm

    Faith Farm Well-Known Member

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    I am getting 8 sows & 2 boar hogs to provide some of the meat for our farmers market and sale pigglets. The farmer I am purchasing them from has them on free choice bulk feeders and goes through tons of feed. The area we want to feed them is soon to be constructed with open field and woods for free roaming. We will set up individual farrowing pens, a sorting pen, feeding pen for pigglets and an area for feeding sows. I want to limit the sows feed intake to about 7-8 pounds per day just to maintain them and keep me from going broke. The grass and woods should provide the balance. What feeding pen design or method would you recommend to accomplish feeding each sow limited grain suppliment? Thank you all.
     
  2. Misty

    Misty Misty Gonzales

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    well, first of all they will need less than that daily unless they are lactating. (good news!). Only feed 5-6# for maintenence. I think you will find it very hard to "sort" pigs when they are hungry. Especially hungry sows. But I have been wrong before. Our sows are lucky enough to have individual pens, but I would try to figure out to keep the sows separate unless it is breeding time. Then just keep lots of troughs and big area for them to eat. One will always get pushed away.
     

  3. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    There is a solution. You will have to fabricate a narror stall/stanchion for each sow. Each stall will have to have a solid rear door. The reason for the door is to prevent an aggressive sow from biting a more timid one in the rear and thus forcing the timid one to back out thus leaving her feed. A screen door spring can be used to hold the door closed and the sow will learn to back against it and exit when finished eating. Obviously you will have to open all the doors at time of feeding for the sows to enter. A simple method of putting the hinge on the top and letting the door act as a flap will work but it is necessary to design a stop so that the door cannot swing inward passed vertical. The sow can back against the gravity position of the door and exit. Again the doors will have to be opened to permit entry at each feeding. It is simple to fabricate such a setup as all you need are some rough boards and a some short fence posts.
     
  4. Faith Farm

    Faith Farm Well-Known Member

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    I found a web site this morning through another Homesteader called Grazeonline.com describing his set up for grazing sows with his cattle on pasture.
    Setting up the gestating sow system
    By Jim Van Der Pol, Kerkhoven, Minnesota — Hogs fit on grass farms: It is up to the grazier to decide how.

    The design you mentioned Agmantoo could be utilized in this system but used only a few times a week. 4 tons per year of hog feed for 8 sows and have my cow manure cleaned up with introducing the sows with the cattle is good news.
    Agmantoo, you have a private message.