Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Our Porcine Pals

Well, today is the last full day with the litter of 8 little (BIG!) pigs. It's bittersweet for sure. This is the first time I've raised pigs and gotten to be close to them as an animal. They are great, super entertaining! Nothing is more amusing than feeding a pig a peach, pits and all. They love them.

All 8 are heading to the processor tomorrow morning at 5am. My great Uncle Charlie called in a favor for us and hooked us up with his friend Tim, who hauls livestock for a living in CT. Tim will come early and help us load them into his trailer and then he and Ejay will take them to Altamont. We'll of course be getting breakfast and coffee for our helper/hauler and a HUGE thank you to Charlie is forthcoming. We are really very lucky to have a host of resources in the area, family and friends alike. Charlie has been a farmer for all of his 80 years, first at his parents beef operation and later at his own farm in Pawling. He raises beef and lamb, keeps draft horses and a lot of laying hens. You couldn't ask for a better resource on all things livestock related and he's been working in the area for so long that he knows all the players on a first name basis. So when we were having a hard time finding someone to haul the pigs (we don't have a truck and trailer that could haul all 1600lbs at once), we put in a call.

The pigs have been at the farm for about 6 months, all 8 having come from the same litter in April. It has been a real learning experience for me, especially in the way pigs test your intelligence. They have always found all of the vulnerable places in our electric fencing, no matter how well we thought we had it configured. At one point we had about 7000 volts running through 3 lines of electric fencing and the pigs couldn't have cared less, the crawled right underneath like it was nothing. We eventually had to switch them to electro-netting, which was just enough of a barrier to keep them in their pen.

In any case, I'm thankful that these creatures have been so enjoyable and that they are providing food for us and for our customers. They have been great pals for the past 6 months.

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