Surely that’s a pregnant pig, right? Right. We STILL have three sows that have not farrowed this year. It’s been sort of crazy. At different times, every single one of them had a very defined milk line, or at least we thought so. We were going to take Ginny to the butcher, convinced she wasn’t pregnant, and then she started looking very very pregnant, separating herself from the herd, etc. That was two months ago. Now all three of them look like this, really, with teats getting full and round round bellies. We say we are on piglet alert almost every day, and when one of them doesn’t show up for a meal, we hopefully go off to find where they are, only to be disappointed again.
Still, our theory is that it could be something about our management style, still. They are definitely not underfed. Between the new pastures all full of stuff to root, which they love, and the haul of pre-consumer food that we get from the food bank, they are leaving food in the trough at every meal. Yogurt is a favorite. We got truckloads of snack size organic Greek yogurt almost a month ago, and I am still doling it out twice a day. It takes so long to empty those leeetle containers, and there is so much trash, but at least we are keeping the actual food out of the landfill.
So we are trying to just relax and keep learning about these pigs. We figure we have until the fall to decide who, if anyone, goes down the road. We kept two piglets, one for our consumption, and one to give to the food bank. If neither big girl (Ginny and Hermione) have piglets by then, we might send them off to freezer camp instead, and start over with the two gilts.
I’m also considering trading these two registered gilts for some run of the mill feeder pigs … if you know anyone who’d like to get into Tamworth pigs and has been raising others for food, let me know. We have such a demand for the meat that it’s tempting to think about the Ginny/Hermione solution, but that’s only if they aren’t pregnant. I need to make them pee on a stick. I wonder if there’s a way?