Pigs Chew Trees

Pig Chewed Tree

Pigs will chew, and kill, trees. They’ll do this to maples, to beech, to pine, to fruit trees. They tend to be more aggressive towards smaller saplings. This is more of an issue in winter and more of an issue in smaller paddocks or pens. So if you want the pigs to clear out brush and trees you’ll need to mob graze them – that is put a lot of animals in a small area so the eat it all down.

This particular tree is an apple out in the middle of a large paddock. None of the other young apples, or other trees, around it are chewed. I’m guessing our boar Spitz did this. He may have simply been sharpening his tusks. Perhaps a sow was in heat and he was showing off. This particular chewing won’t kill this apple tree.

Fortunately pigs are not death to trees like goats and sheep but if you have fruit trees, or other trees, that you value then you may want to put fencing up to protect the trees. Double parallel fence lines make a good tree zone and a reserve for forages seeding back into the pasture as well as a creep feeding area for small pigs, chickens and ducks.

Also see:
Pigs Fixing Fences
More Fencing
Fence Lines 2
Poultry Netting for Pigs
Moving Pigs With Fence Panels
Calibrating Pain
Dumb Pig, Smart Pig
Pig Trap
Fence Jumpers

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About Walter Jeffries

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3 Responses to Pigs Chew Trees

  1. Johan van der Merwe says:

    That looks familiar… I had some milk goats in the past that were debarking a lot of trees so that they die. It was Karee trees which is a relative hard wood. They were biggish trees, about 6 inches in diameter. They did this even with enough grass around. The pigs are nothing compared to goats regarding damage to trees. I had the pigs now in our winter in the orchard. I have noticed that they were chewing in the soft fig trees right at the end just before I moved them to a new paddock. I put some thorn bush branches around the fig trees and that helped. That was when the grass in the orchard was almost depleted. They left the peach, apricot, orange and lemon trees alone. The pigs are an absolute winner in an orchard, leaving the rich manure behind. Cannot wait for spring and the first rains :-)

  2. joyce says:

    this is so interesting. i never knew pigs wolud do this!

  3. In this case it just looks like the boar Spitz was goring the tree – practicing with his tusks. The pigs do eat brush, regen and saplings but that looks very different. In those cases they tend to start closer to the tips of the branches and eat inward. In the fall and winter they’ll strip the bark from small trees – a useful habit when clearing land, just do it on purpose.

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