Eating With Your Mouth Open

Mouse & Piglets Eating

Maybe it looks cute when you’re little but there is a reason your mother told you not to eat with your mouth open. It makes you look like a pig, Mouse. Oh, wait, she is a pig, despite the name. Okay, I caught her at a most inopportune moment. Paparazzi are like that.

The piglets look small standing next to Mouse but they’re actually quite large now, bigger than my boot which they nibble and snuffle at when I come to visit. Her piglets are eating cottage cheese and whey, stealing a part of her daily ration so I bring a bit extra. They’re nibbling on bits of her hay as well. After four weeks she’s starting to thin up a bit. Soon they’ll wean and she won’t have to support both their and her own appetites.

Will has been working on building them a good winter space in the atrium where they’ll have protection from the wind and be easy to get to for morning chores. In not too long the snows will melt and they’ll be out on real pasture. Helliconia Winter is the story of their lives.

Outdoors: 24°F/2°F Partially Sunny
Farm House: 38°F/34°F
Tiny Cottage: 63°F/59°F

About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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6 Responses to Eating With Your Mouth Open

  1. Andrew Cartiza says:

    That is a great book or should I say a series that you make reference to there I loved it. It must be pretty amazing living most of your life in a Vermont winter and then having spring dawn. Your pigs are amazing. I never realized they could live out in the snow so far north. Keep up the great stories. Glad youre writing again!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hey Walter,Just wondering. Do you have a tagging or marking system that you use when the piglets are born?
    Glad your back up and running…….Think Spring :) george

  3. We don’t use a tagging system. I can simply tell every pig apart. Each pig has something different about its markings, face shape, ears, etc – just like with cows. That works for me and it is enough for identifying the pigs we keep who become breeders.

    Years ago I looked into ear tags (the pigs pull them out), tattoos (they blur as the pig grows), tried ear notching (works but pugly as heck) and RFID (too expensive, inconvenient, non-visual and a bother). There are also questions if the latter causes cancer – probably not in the short term for the pig.

    Simple visual identification by natural markings works so for now I’ll stick with that. If I get to a point where I can’t remember all our pigs, and it matters, then I’ll revisit the topic.

  4. DennisP says:

    I never realized pigs could be so interesting ’till I started reading your blog. Animals in general are fascinating – I envy you running your farm. By the way, good to see you back up and running with your blog. Always one of my daily stops.

  5. I had heard of the Helliconia series, but never read it. Looks like it’s worth a peek.

    Love the contrast of the blooming Jade with the continued deep freeze – Do the pigglets like snow?

  6. The piglets play about in the snow but I would guess that they like the warmer seasons more when there are things to smell and nibble.

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