Dark Stripes

Dark Striped Pig

The dark striped piglet is the daughter of one of our white sows and the son of a particularly fine looking red boar who we were testing. The red boar came out of highly prolific Blackie crossed with our oldest boar Archimedes. Most of her litter mates were simply white piglets with few markings of distinction. But the dark piglet is black and white. It will be interesting to see how she looks and performs as she grows.

The stripes will vanish in time. They’re a throw back feature to far older genetics of wild hogs far, far back in the pig’s ancestry. Many breeds show this in piglets. As they grow the stripes fade. Normally the stripes are a reddish brown on our piglets who show them. This is the first time I’ve seen black stripes.

Outdoors: 50°F/26°F Sunny
Farm House: 65°F/53°F
Tiny Cottage: 65°F/55°F

About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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10 Responses to Dark Stripes

  1. oshea12566 says:

    Are you living in the cottage full time now? What are you planning on doing with the farmhouse? Have you considered renting it out to readers of this blog for weekends?(or weeks or whole summer)I am sure there are alot of readers of this blog that would love to spend a weekend / week helping out around the farm. I know I would. You would be introducing local farming to families that may never otherwise be able to experience it. Who knows maybe even make a future farmer! I read on your blog that you do not want to heat the house, so maybe just rent it out during summer months. Yes, it would be a little extra work for you. But on the other hand, it is extra income, more money for feed, safety equipment, tractor maintenance, etc. Couldn’t you use an extra set of hands? Just an idea.

  2. Hi Oshea,

    Yes, we’re up in the cottage now. We moved in last Christmas Eve. The farm house right now has our farming hand tools, machine shop work space for fixing things, storage, etc. We may sell the farm house but it will have to be moved to a new location by the buyer. There are people who have approached us over the years looking to do that but we weren’t quite ready. The other option we’ve considered is turning it into a hay shed and such. Time will tell.

    Interesting thought on the agri-tourism farm house rent outs but Holly says no. It would take a lot of work and money to setup.



  3. oshea says:

    Oh well,it was just a thought. Anything to help bring in the mighty green paper. Sure, the intial start up cost maybe high, but how much would it bring in for the long run? A hotel costs..what 100-200 a night? Say you charge 300 for the weekend….who couldn’t use an extra 1200 a month? Your blog had a million hits you probably would not even have to advertise….I bet there would be a waiting list! I know my family and I would rent it out as much as we can. I would love to introduce my 3 year old daughter to farm life. Would love to see how she reacts to all that goes on. Although she would spend most of the time on my shoulders so she is not stepped on by a boar! LOL. Anyway…I really enjoy your blog. Hope you find the time to check out mine.

  4. Hi Oshea,

    It’s something we’ve thought about it but I doubt it will ever happen. One of the issues is that there are a lot of regulations in addition to all the costs of fixing up.

    We would also have to put in a very expensive ($15,000) new septic system to come under the regulations and if we provided any food there would be additional regulations.

    On top of that there is some weirdness about if we’re doing agri-tourism we could lose our farm status which has significant tax and other implications that would again dramatically increase our costs.

    If we were to do agri-tourism then what I would like to do is build cottages, something we’ve talked about, much like our tiny cottage. That requires virtually no maintenance, can’t burn down and are almost self-heating in the winter. The old farm house is a big job to both fix up and to maintain.

    It all gets quite complex and we would prefer to focus on the things we can do well. I’m also dubious, especially in this changing economy, as to whether the agri-tourism would pay. Virtual visits may be the best way.



    PS. I’ve been over to your blog. Fun stuff! I always visit my visitors. :)

  5. oshea12566 says:

    Well losing your farm status is reason enough not to do it. That is to bad, it would have been pretty cool and maybe even more money in your pocket. But it would be a risk in today’s economy, spend all that money, time, and sweat and than no one show up! That would be a real bummer. 15,000for a new septic is about the same amount I was quoted for mine here in New York. The pipes were crushed by a Bobcat skidsteer loader. In fact it is what lead me..that is to say my wife ok’d the purchase of a new Kubota BX24tractor. Turns out,cost the same as a new septic, so I bought it and put the septic leach field in myself. You can read more:

  6. The reason we got our tractor was very similar. We had to put in a new water line after the line got destroyed by log skidding when we were field clearing. The estimates to just dig the trench for the water line were more than the down payment on a tractor with backhoe and bucket loader. That didn’t include filling the trench in or any of the other work. We went without running water for a year while we saved. It was worth it – I must say that the tractor’s been a very useful tool.

  7. heyercapital says:

    Do you think there might be a different flavor with that piglet with the “wild hog” remnant genetics?

    Also, any update on the boat taint study?

  8. The stripes disappear and by the time the pig is a large grower it will just look like other pigs. I haven’t noticed any difference in flavor in striped pigs vs non-striped.

    On the boar taint, we’ve now slaughtered a boar as old as 30 months of age – he was delicious and had no sign of taint. He was also huge and eaten by a very large number of people so that gives a nice large sample set. We’ve also slaughtered a very large number of finisher boars who were about six months of age. All of them tasted most excellent. I will continue to eat in the name of science… :)

  9. Farmerbob1 says:

    Do you have any follow-up images of the dark-striped piglet? Did they end up with any interesting characteristics?

    • We have had only a couple of pigs where the stripes lasted to adulthood. Normally the stripes fade, typically by the time they’re weaners. A recent gilt got slaughtered last week who had stripes to adult hood. She was basically grey black with very fine light white stripes. As a piglet the stripes were very clear but they became blurry and indistinct as an adult. Otherwise she was just a pig like any other pig – nothing particular about her.

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