Homesteading Forum banner

21 - 31 of 31 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,618 Posts
No commercial feeds. We serve up some grain and corn in the morning and then they head out into the woods for lunch and supper. They come back and forth thruout the day for water and to check their feed bowls but they are very low maintenance. We will finish them on acorns and apples and garden spoilage towards fall. They do the same work of clearing brush as goats but without jumping the fence or sleeping on the roof of my truck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,618 Posts
Folks can be a little cynical of AGHs because they grow slow, and are typically smaller. They aren't designed to go from feed lot to truck to processor to bacon aisle. Overfeed them and they will be all fat. That fat however, is excellent and the meat is many times sold to restaurants and chefs. I can run multiple areas, typically 1-3 acres of timber with little more than two strands of poly wire. Crossing them with a Kune or an Idaho Pasture Hog can make for a meatier hog if that is what you want. I enjoy them first for personality and manageability.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
Your pigs actually sounds very similar to ours! Even though ours are not a heritage breed, we keep them in with just transportable electric fencing, and they live in a 20 acre field all summer long and root around, and dig everything up! They are really great that way! They are also super friendly!! I train my pigs all the time!! I had one that would come when she heard me come in the (40 acre!) pen, and she would sit, and roll over! She was very cute!
We also get a lot of flack for not raising purebred pigs, but the cross that we do has been very beneficial! The Yorkie gives you really nice long bacon, and the Duroc gives you beautiful hams, and shoulders! One of them was named Hammy cause her very nice looking butt 🤭! We used to do a Yorkie Landrace, but we weren't getting very big hams, which was why we switched.
It would be interesting to see how fast you could finish a heritage breed hog though. Because most people we sell our piglets to, take about 8-10 months, sometimes even a whole year. Where as we are able to finish them in 6 months. And these pigs that we finish are all the runts and rejects (swollen ears, hernias, no ears, no tail, humpbacks, etc, etc. everything no one wants at the end of the sale season 😂), we finish a good pig in about 4 months. And when I say finished, I mean 220 hanging.
But, we make our own feed, whereas everyone else buys commercial hog grower, and we chop and mix our own, and they are also fed leftover milk from the cow, and we make them extra milk.
So it would be very interesting to see how quickly we could finish a heritage pig. We could probably get ours done faster but it's hard to get them the water that they need. Anyone found a water dish that works for 100+ pigs, that they don't end up tipping over or stepping/bathing in?? Lol!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
In m

In my experiences, free choice feed right up to 240 pounds, then everything goes to fat.
Same. Especially the first hundred pounds. Once you get the first one hundred on em, then you can start to wean them an stall their growth. Any earlier and it leads to stunted pigs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
I would agree for certain breeds. We free range them but at no time do we free feed.
Haha! We do both over the summer! 😂 They get 20-40 acres of free range pasture that we plant in peas, radish, turnips, and anything else that grows in there, and they also get free access to our feed in a feeder in the middle of the field.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,053 Posts
101pigs, I'm wondering there aren't two reasons for this. I've just got my act together and come back on after the switch over from Internet Explorer which might be part of it. The other part is that to do pigs well, they are much more labour intensive than sheep or cattle. We see that here - somebody comes in with a hiss and a roar, breeding and selling (and doing it well) but 12 months later they've got out of it. They saw the price of weaners and thought they were in for a killing without realizing how labour intensive they were. Sheep and cattle you can put in a paddock, keep an eye on them and their grass, shift them a week later et el. Need to be drenched a couple of times a year, shorn and belly and crutched a couple of times a year and that's about it. Pigs, not so. So.... are more people getting out of pigs than into it?

I got out of pigs because of husbands business and the time that was taking up, and also because of age - mine, not theirs:D. I would love to go back to breeding pigs.......

Cheers,
Ronnie
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,618 Posts
One of the reasons I focused on pigs over other animals was the lack of maintenance. Breeds make a big difference, just as in a cow is not a cow, and a horse is not a horse, there are exceptions to everything.
 
21 - 31 of 31 Posts
Top