Milk and...?

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by Firefly, Jul 18, 2006.

  1. Firefly

    Firefly Well-Known Member

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    I now have a good source of free expired milk. :dance: I can probably get ~2 gallons/day. If each pig gets 1G, can it have only corn with it, or does it need bagged feed too? Eggs? If I manage to find some alfalfa, what then?
     
  2. Up North

    Up North KS dairy farmers

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    When we have alot of waste milk I usually just feed the plain cracked corn. Add some alfalfa that sounds good to me. I think any eggs would be a bonus. Of course there are alot more experienced people here than me to offer their opinion. But we've had good results with that diet. That's what our pigs lived on this winter (minus the eggs). Whenever we are running low on milk we start adding some of the pig grain with everything in it.

    How did you manage to score the free milk? Good for you, the pigs will love it!

    Heather
     

  3. Firefly

    Firefly Well-Known Member

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    From a local small market. She gets credit from the dairy but doesn't have to return the full containers like other markets claim is necessary. She can just make a notation to give to teh delivery person. I got 2.5 today and there were 3 or 4 in there with today's date on them. Yay! Anyway, El P, how much milk is "a lot"? Is 1G/day anywhere near enough?

    I never have a sense of how much food to give them. They always eat everything and always act starved whenever I go near them, whether it's twice a day or 10 times! LOL I never bothered with a big on-demand feed trough because they don't like it dry. I use a quart yogurt or ricotta container and fill it 4 times per feeding, 2 or 3 of feed and 2 or 1 of soaked whole corn, and mix with water and ~2C worth of powdered milk (they each get half of this and have separate food bowls). I give this morning and night and half or 3/4 for lunch. They get very little else, hardly any eggs because I am selling them now. Puerco is kinda fat and Sunshine's pretty slim in comparison. I figure that his being chubby means they're getting enough?? I would like to get them off the feed or no more than one containerful per feeding, mostly because the meat is supposed to taste better? The corn isn't much cheaper than the feed, $6 vs 8.50, and I'm not sure which lasts longer.
     
  4. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    Oinky went through her gestation mostly on whole corn and spoiling milk. I also had a whole bucket of goat kid formula that had gotten bugs in it. She did very well as you already know. When I had them, I gave her eggs but not more than one or two at a time. The milk and eggs provide a pig with protein and calcium so what is left is a need for minerals, carbs (corn), vitamins (veggie scraps) and fiber. She received about 6 pounds of corn in two servings and about a quart of milk per day plus whatever veggie scraps, eggs, or egg shells I had, bread going old, etc. They don't need specialized feed. I used to give them that in Florida because the feed was the same price as corn and I didn't have what I have available now. Having supported a sow of unknown origins through gestation and lactation, I think what I'm feeding is great. If they look good then what you are feeding is good. And sounds like they look good :hobbyhors
     
  5. Firefly

    Firefly Well-Known Member

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    They look excellent! And they're very energetic, so I don't worry about them. We have muddled through w/o problems, whew! I so wish I had a digital camera to get some pics up here and for me to keep.

    It's the vitamins and minerals that concern me most, and enough protein. If she got a quart of milk a day I won't worry about them getting a gallon each. Plus I think I've located a source of outdated various foods including bread and produce, so I may end up in the red here! :hobbyhors If I can find some alfalfa I'll feel much better, not sure how good old rotting vegies are for a pig, although they simply don't eat what they don't like and are surprisingly picky!
     
  6. Up North

    Up North KS dairy farmers

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    Aw Shoot sounds like you're doin' great with them FF. Basically we will give milk as available, then add water to reach total volume for day. When available, feeders will get 1 gallon each twice a day milk. The larger hogs
    like 225-300 lbs. might drink 2-4 gallons of milk twice a day plus some water in between. When they lose interest in grain and start leaving 90 % uneaten, then you are getting enough milk & other veg in them to keep them happy and just give'em a smidgen of grain for tasty treat.

    Cheers good go on the EGG :buds: :buds: SALES!!!!!
     
  7. John Schneider

    John Schneider Well-Known Member

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    Firefly...your pigs are the luckiest pigs in the world! They will be just fine....I wouldn't get too heavy on the protein though. Milk, eggs are high in protein and ulcers in a pig will kill them very quickly. I had a boar that I sold to some people and it was dead within a week because they wanted him to gain more quickly and were free choicing him high protein commercial feed. Just like us, your breeding stock needs more green than anything in order to stay healthy. Your meat stock can get the richer feed to make for better gains. With their diet I would strongly encourage you to stay away from any commercial feed rations.

    Right now with my brood stock sows and boar, I am feeding about 5 lbs a day each of ground wheat screenings. I am also supplementing them with about 10lbs each of fresh grass/clover trimmings along with our organic table scraps. I am out of pasture right now with our drought and the unexpected cow/calf pair along with 300 chickens. So I mow an unfenced patch of pasture down by our pond that stays lush all summer no matter the weather. It is a pain to mow and feed the clippings and I need to get that pasture fenced...just no time right this second. The pasture they are in right now has been grazed pretty good and without the rain, it simply isn't recovering as it should. I do need to move them soon. Once I finish my little fencing project on another pasture, I can move the cow/calf there and give my pigs back their good pasture/farrowing grounds.

    John
    www.goldforestfarms.blogspot.com
     
  8. Firefly

    Firefly Well-Known Member

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    Aw gee, thanks you guys! You're making me blush! Actually I think Oinky is the luckiest--look at what she stumbled into! :clap:

    Just time for a quick question as I am about to strat my new job, and boy do I need the $$! The place with the free food is one of those discount groceries with dented cans etc. Pretty icky place but milk and bread should be fine. One thing they offered is frozen dinners that are past the date or came open. Is that safe for pigs or chickens?? What about very old produce. I doubt its nutritional value beyond roughage.
     
  9. John Schneider

    John Schneider Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like you hit the goldmine for hog feed Firefly! The frozen dinners would be fine minus all the plastic. The old produce will be great too... I would be remiss without mentioning that what you feed them is what you will eventually eat. I admit that I am a bit of a "new hippy" with my new found angst against the world of chemicals...I don't want to come across as preachy here and I do not want to appear to tell anyone what they should do, but there is a reason that we eat strictly organic foods in our house and our stock is fed strictly organic feed. If you knew what pesticides and chemical residues were in our food, it would make you sick...and it is by the way. My point is this...we are at the top of the food chain and we eat protein and fat in the form of meat. The animals we eat have stored most of the chemicals and pesticides in their fat reserves that we now eat. If I were you, I would carefully wash the produce that you are planning to feed your beautiful pigs. Knowing you how I do, I would guess that you are doing that anyway!!LOL Like I said, if I die any time soon, I would like to be reincarnated as one of your pigs...what a great life! Free food...great water facilities that I can't knock over....nice cool shade with a shower once a day....ahhhh...hog heaven at Firefly's farm!

    Good luck with your new job too!!! That is great. I hope you enjoy it.
     
  10. Firefly

    Firefly Well-Known Member

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    Hey everyone, thanks for all the info and kind words. Makes me feel less sorry for my kids for not having pasture and a stream. :( It wouldn't have occurred to me that too much protein was a risk, so thanks for the info John.

    Sigh. If only organic people didn't cost twice as much, and feed is more than double! I grow things w/o chemicals, but I can't usually buy organic produce and meat, it just isn't in the budget. I'm not sure about that frozen junk, I rarely eat it myself. Maybe I'll stick to dairy and grains. Some buggy cereal should be a hit, and the chickens love a nice plate of pasta!

    Egg sales were off last week. The week before someone told people she'd found a "baby chick" in an egg. :eek: This week my mother told me the same thing. ***?! Turns out it was a blood spot. :rolleyes: I was able to ID which eggs have them so will eliminate them from my cartons, but in this gossipy town it may take awhile before the damage is reversed. :stars:
     
  11. John Schneider

    John Schneider Well-Known Member

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    My organics rant....farmers have had to sell their products at relatively the same prices for 50+ years...all the while, the cost of producing that same product has increased at a rate that is unbelievable. The cost of our food at retail has gone through the roof because of all the packaging marketing, shipping, importing, middlemen etc. I often battle with this myself...I would like to offer my products at a price that is lower, but on the other hand, it is about time that the farmer gets paid what is finally owed him. I always laugh that people have no problem purchasing cd's or tv's or cars at the prices that they do, but they will complain and refuse to buy eggs at $4 a dozen and instead choose chemical dosed, animal abused commercial eggs in order to save a buck and a half a week! The good thing is that organics is really taking off. The more people that buy, the more people will produce and prices will probably come down. That isn't necessarily good for my pocketbook, but it is good for the earth.

    That is too bad about your egg business....you will get it back I am sure. My son sells eggs, he is 8. I wonder if we should candle the eggs before letting them go? He is selling his eggs at $3 what are you selling yours for Firefly?

    By the way...how was your first day at the new job?
     
  12. John Schneider

    John Schneider Well-Known Member

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    Hey Firefly...by the way, I don't necessarily think that you are giving them too much protein...I am simply saying that there is such a thing as too much. I think what you are doing is great.

    One thing you could try by the way is to plant canola in their paddock. It is fairly aggressive growing and if you broadcast it they will nibble at it as it grows. It is an annual, so you would have to plant it again every so often. Forage turnips would be similar and might be available in your area.
     
  13. vancom

    vancom Well-Known Member

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    <<Sigh. If only organic people didn't cost twice as much>>

    you gonna feed them to the pigs??


    Sorry--the "scent of a sow thread" got me to giggling so much I lost control!!

    I have two of Tango's pigs (of Oinky fame) and they have already gotten huge! Just wish they wouldn't bite my calves (mine--no cows here, no room) when I feed them. We do lots of goat milk (with dh in hospital and kids at grandparents, we have no milk drinkers but me) and 2 eggs twice a day (chickens working OT) and and some of what my dad referred to as "slop" (leftovers) and some of that dang commercial feed which I do not like and my dogs have eaten and then vomited.

    Man, I'm just trying to envision them off to the butcher's--how is of course the next great question! Thankfully we have months to go.

    Vanessa
    near Nashville, TN
     
  14. Firefly

    Firefly Well-Known Member

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    ROFL! I didn't even notice when I reread it. But I can think of a few vegans that wouldn't even make a decent snack! :p

    There is a thread on the physical aspect of how to get them to the butcher. The emotional is another matter. Everyone says they get ugly as they get older. It's true they don't look as cute, but their personalities really blossom. Frankly, they keep getting cuter! NO FAIR!!! :flame: I mean, they thank you when you do something nice for them. And we're going to eat them. :nono: :help: I still think about a dog I put down years ago, and this is giong to be worse.

    You have Oinky's babies? How cool! I feed mine from outside the fence. A hungry pig is a bitey pig. I can go in while they're eating and they usually ignore me but will occasionally follow me and consider nibbling on my toes (I wear flipflops :rolleyes: ) and pushing against my legs. A sharp "NO!!" and a bonk on the head stops them. Those stories of farmers being eaten by their hogs scare me. I make sure I'm alpha to all my animals!
     
  15. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    John I just had a mild "episode" at another forum where I said there is somethng wrong when a box of cornflakes costs more than a gallon of milk. Not considering organic. Why does a candy bar cost more than a dozen eggs? Not right, says I!

    Vanessa, Squeaker was trying to bite my calf at feeding time. Do either one of yours drop at your feet and roll over? LOL, Squeaker does that to everyone, even the dogs. She likes to be belly rubbed. I wonder how Greg's are doing? Squeaker and Grunt are growing so fast! Grunt has huge jowls (bacon) and Oinky has finally gotten her weight back up. If it weren't so darn hot, I'd snap some photos but the heat really zaps the energy out of me :(
     
  16. Firefly

    Firefly Well-Known Member

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    :flame: I went and got that free food Thursday. Before they would give it I had to sign a waiver that it was for animals only and I wouldn't eat it or resell it. Then she wheeled over a cart of wooden crates and we loaded the truck. I culdn't tell what was inside but there were lots of moldy strawberries in boxes, which concerned me. When I got home I discovered the crates were full of black slimy green beans and totally moldy corn. :flame: I coudln't feed it to anyone and didn't even watn to compost it for fear they'd eat it, but I had to unload the truck and hose off the muck because of the farmers market. I was out at 5am today reloading all the boxes to go to the dump. :flame: A waiver--what a joke!

    There were also many containers of cream cheese. That was a hit with everyone! A little turkey looks pretty cute with a big blob of cream cheese on its beak. So it wasn't a total bust but was I ever :flame: :flame: :flame: !!!

    The good things is I also stopped at teh feed store and enquired about hay. One of the employees has 2nd cut round bales from last year, and he is supposed to deliver two this weekend and says he will put them where I want them, even after I described how hard it would be to get them there. :dance:
     
  17. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    I tried to go the free route in Florida and would be told that they didn't have any. Then before I left the parking lot someone would come in and fill up the back of their truck with expired breads and pastries :shrug: I asked if there was an agreement or contract type of deal and was told no. First come first served. Yeah right :rolleyes: First friend or relative to come would be the first served. At other times, I discovered the mold and slime which I won't feed. The free route for me has been a total waste though it has given others some free food for their pigs. Right now my new calves are wasting enough to feed my pigs and my garden and neighbors' gardens have given a little. So you might say it is used twice :)
     
  18. Up North

    Up North KS dairy farmers

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    FF, maybe when you start going on a regular basis things won't have a chance to get so rotten. I would be totally bummed too if I went through all that trouble to pick up food for my pigs only to have it be too rotten. Better luck next time!

    John, read your blog. I don't think I will ever be able to look at another potato the same again. Went out to eat and had some home made potato chips. What you wrote about potatos being sprayed so many times kept running through my head the entire time I was eating. I think I'll be planting my own potatos next year!

    Heather
     
  19. Firefly

    Firefly Well-Known Member

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    Eww. I haven't read about the potatoes, but you don't want California strawberries either!

    Heather, this particular store is just gross in general. I'll be surprised if it stays in business because you feel crawly after going inside. I'm amazed they havn't been closed down. I do get things from other markets and they are fine, but so far I've only been able to get some produce from a small market, and now the milk. The supermarkets have their food promised to local pig farmers! :rolleyes:

    Well, I'm off to the dump! :flame:
     
  20. Charleen

    Charleen www.HarperHillFarm.com Supporter

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    We raise our pigs on goat milk, whole oats and whole wheat.
    We mix the grains and pour milk over them and let set at least 24 hours until the milk starts to ferment. This seems to be much better for their metabolism because the grains have already started to break down, sometimes they are almost sprouting. We also give our goats kefir if we're up to our ears in it.