Spring Piglets


Spring Piglets with Chickens

Piglets are popping. These little guys were born in the south field shed which is an open three sided shed wrapped around a courtyard. They have a deep bedding pack which gives them warmth from below as the wood chips and hay compost.
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Also in their nursery are two hens setting on eggs under the creep board. If my estimate of the timing is right these piglets will have moved out well before the chicks are born.

In another space in the south field shed there are two geese setting on eggs.

You might be wondering, “What is a ‘nursery’ as shown here for the piglets?” These are private rooms in the south field open (three sided) shed where sows can build a nest during the winter months. They run from about 8’x6′ to 8’x12′ and have a doorway with a raised threshold that keeps piglets in until their old enough to be out and about but lets the sow hop in and out freely so she can socialize, get water, whey, hay, exercise and go to the bathroom out in the winter paddocks. You can see one in this article When Pigs Fly which shows one of our sows Charlie jumping the threshold into her winter nursery.

In the nurseries there are typically a creep space that the sow can’t get into where we put wood shavings, extra hay and some food in a dish for the piglets. This is called creep feeding. When the sow is out and about the piglets often go into the creep during the winter as it is one more layer of protection from the weather and warmer. Then when she returns and lays down they come back out of the creep to nurse. Now with it being so warm the piglets don’t use the creeps much and the chickens are laying eggs in this particular one.

Outdoors: 44°F/24°F 1/2″ Snow, Sunny
Tiny Cottage: 66°F/61°F

Daily Spark: Egg salad doesn’t just go bad, it goes evil.

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About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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4 Responses to Spring Piglets

  1. am in the pm says:

    Did you anticipate the hens to use the creep feeding area as a nest site ?

  2. Eileen says:

    I’m curious about what sort of food you put out in the creep for the piglets?

    • It varies seasonally. Eggs are typically available and this is a great use for them as the piglets love them and they get the maximum nutritional leverage. Milk, whey, yogurt, a little bread, pumpkins and apple pomace when available, etc. Putting in things the mother is getting like the whey is good because they smell that on her breath and are more interested. They learn what to eat at her snout.

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