Turkeys & Piggy Playmates?

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by dalilies, Mar 23, 2005.

  1. dalilies

    dalilies Well-Known Member

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    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Ohio
    Been reading the old posts and now I know I've gotten myself into a corner. I stay at home with 3 kids and care for our 3 acres, 13 chickens, 4 ducks, 3 cats and 1 little terrier. One of our neighbors had a litter of yorkshires 2 weeks ago and I let my hubby talk me into taking the kids to see them when they were a week old. Sounded innocent enough. :rolleyes: One little girl had been laid on. She was doing real well but as the others got bigger, she was getting less and less to eat. She was still on her feet but it was obvious she wasn't going to make it if someone didn't take her away from those piggy littermates. That is how a former dairy farmer's daughter ended up with a pig in the family room. I put her box right next to my daughter's fair chicks. Nothing says hillbilly like livestock in the family room.

    Once she started doing better and eating good I moved her to the basement. Felt sorry for her being by herself so I put 4 of the 6 week old chicks in with her. From all that I have read, I now have realized (a little to my horror) that I can't just raise her by herself. We will be getting 5 turkey chicks in a couple weeks. (Starting to wonder if the fencing companies are sponsering 4-H. Longer my daughter is in 4-H the more buildings and fences I need.) Was wondering if those 5 turkeys would make good company for her or if I am going to have to get another pig. I just wanted to raise one for my family. Really didn't want to raise more than we needed.

    This is not how I envisioned my future 10 years ago but I wouldn't trade it. Although, it would be nice if the house guests didn't leave unwanted presents. :eek:

    Thanks for any advice.
    Jennifer
     
  2. Tracy

    Tracy Well-Known Member

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    May 2, 2002
    Location:
    PA
    Pigs will eat Chickens and turkeys. Been there done that. At first all was well and then after the pigs got older they started eating my chickens :no:
     

  3. dalilies

    dalilies Well-Known Member

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    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Ohio
    Oh My! :eek:

    I'm so glad I asked. My daughter would have been so upset to have her 4-H project eaten before it went to fair. Wonder if the judge has ever had a "The pig ate me project" excuse before.

    Looks like I better pick-up another pig or make arrangements for her to go back to her littermates after she gets bigger. I don't want to spend the summer chasing a pig out of my garden or trying to find ways to keep her happy. Hard enough to keep the kids out of trouble.

    Thank you,
    Jennifer
     
  4. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    That pig you have can and will survive by herself. The only advantage of having more that one is they will compete with each other for the food and maybe gain a little faster. Thus the phrase, make a pig of themselves!
     
  5. dalilies

    dalilies Well-Known Member

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    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Ohio
    Hmmm, now I have to decide if another one would be enough of a plus to offset the care. Especially since we weren't planning on doing any pigs until next year.

    Think I'm going to try the pig tractor. I'm glad I found this site. I put my chickens in tractors and love it. Wouldn't do cornishX without one. I think the pig tractor will make me just as happy.

    Jennifer
     
  6. luvrulz

    luvrulz Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Location:
    Kentucky
    The pig tractor is an excellent idea! We have one of our gilts in one and somedays we move her 3 times, other days we don't move her. Depends on how much she's rooting around! We make sure she has shade and water and let her go to town with the roots. We're having her clean an area for our asparagus patch and she's doing an excellent job!

    We took 3 cow panels and cut one in half vertically. We use landscape timbers and cut 2 in half. We used huge barbed staples to attach the 3 corners and on the fourth corner - we shopped around for heavy duty cable ties - those plastic strips they use on wires and stuff. We found the best ones at a NAPA auto parts place and they were very heavy duty....

    It's a good thing too that it's easy to move it around and my hubby and I can scoot it around where ever we need her to clear out! Excellent!

    Good luck with the young one but if you use the cow panels, make sure she can't wiggle through the bottom holes. When we brought them home at first, hubby thought they couldn't fit through the bottom holes and oops! I watched the first one escape as he was unloading it! LOL We ended up putting them in with the chickens and turkeys until we could put in some better fencing for them. They lived with the chickens for about 3 weeks and since they were so young, they did ok. Now, if a chicken gets in the pig fence, they get chased out. As long as it's just one pig and a couple chickens, the chickens will be ok. It was only when all 4 pigs were together - they tended to gang up on a chicken (or turkey, probably...)

    Our piggies love laying mash too! When they escape, that's what I use to catch them!
     
  7. HesterDaddy

    HesterDaddy Well-Known Member

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    May 21, 2004
    Location:
    Georgia
    I'd go with everyone else's suggestion on here and avoid putting the two together. They're experiences are far more vast than mine and sounds like there's a definite risk in putting poultry and pig together...

    HOWEVER... I have a huge adult female Yorkshire who has pushed up some straw from her bed so that it filled a space between her hog panel and the tin on the outside of her barn. I had a small bantam hen nest in it right beside the pig's head. She hatched out all 7 of her babies and they grew up traveling in and out of the space (including trampling over the pig as a bridge) . On the day they hatched, I even attempted to remove the nest, chicks and hen and when I picked up the hen and she began to screech at me, my big Yorkshire became VERY upset with me and dashed over to see what I was doing! Despite my effort to relocate them, when day's end came, she and her little family trapsed right back through the pig's pen while she just sniffed at them. They settled back into their old place for the night and the pig laid down peacefully beside them. This was how they co-existed, until the chicks became independent and started roosting on the edge of the fence over her head. The bantam has recently begun making another nest, but I think the pig, after eating the discarded shells from the first hatching, is nudging the nest and eating an egg or two as she lays them.