The joy of pigs

I try not to worry about money- but farm life with animals or farm implements/gadgets is guaranteed to drain any money one has in the bank or on a card anywhere!

The issues that need attention on the farm expand to consume any available fiscal capacity.  I think I will patent that as a kind of Newtons law for farmers……..

Of course it’s natural-there is  always something that needs attention, and we are still developing a practical infrastructure so life  is all spend, spend, spend. But  I don’t kid myself. I am not in charge-I just react to each changing priority.

And then, often, I think that the animals actually run  the timetable around here…….last week, just three pigs (the large black and a pair of randy berkshire boars) absconded into the house yard and ploughed up my kitchen garden and finished up any tomatoes and herbs I was reluctant to pull up just yet…….and anything else they could. Including paving!  Really amazing strength in their noses!

Anyway, no point crying about it-I see an opportunity to change the  design of the  courtyard around, and there was  no real damage to the camellia’s  or adolescent citrus trees, which are very hard  to establish in this cold, elevated climate and after all, we did learn a bit more about secure fencing in the process….

So…..

The time has come to do some serious separating of the pig families, now that every one is  interested in finding  a mate! Berkshire boars  separated out  first, and lets hope they respect the netting and electric  wires- I think maybe I will     trial electrifying the netting, but at least three  high 4ml strands set low and  a broad hand span apart and another  set just above head height for them as they have demonstrated that they can get through whatever they choose in order  to reach a  lady fair…

Probably worth siting the girls up hill too so absconding under the netting is a less visible option to them.  I know all pigs are intelligent and I doubt that Berkshires are more intelligent than other breeds- it’s just they do have upright ears so compared to other heritage piggies they have good vision and they  can see the easiest way out. I think it’s as simple as that – and they don’t have to think long to work out a plan either. Like the musketeers, they work as a team to achieve their goals.

Now that the apple orchard site is plowed up and fertilised courtesy of the herd, let’s put the Saddleback  sows in  the stringybark gully for the rest of the winter and Berkshire sows above them on the wattle ridge.

I will have to introduce some ‘panel’ fencing and training electric  around a section of the rough shed and  Ethyl the large Cornish Black can come back to the house veggie garden along with the weaned  saddleback piglets- even at 300 kilos she is  easy to manage and will keep the piglets warm and teach them the ropes till her own litter arrives in September.

A plan- now lets get some order happening here!!

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