Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Piglets!

Poor Julia finally farrowed. If you think she looks big now, look at where her feet are in relation to her belly -- much better than it was a couple days ago when her belly was dragging on the ground and the poor girl could barely walk! She gave birth sometime between Monday night and Tuesday morning. When Mike and I went into the barn for Tuesday morning chores, there were nine piglets all wiggling around, dry, and nursing.

 It is very hard to keep track of nine black piglets -- "did I already count that one?" -- but I think there are five gilts (females) and four boars (males). Sadly, one of the little girls was about half the size of everyone else, and I didn't have a lot of hope that she'd make it. And by this evening, she'd passed away. She seemed happy and healthy, but sometimes runts just don't have what it takes to survive.

I'm really surprised that Julia had nine piglets again. She sure looked bigger than last year! But I suppose she lost her girlish figure and just looked bigger this time.

The boars will mostly likely become pork, and the gilts will be offered for sale as breeding animals. They are American Guinea Hogs, which is an endangered farm animal, unique to the United States. There are only a few hundred in existence because they're small, which makes them undesirable for factory hog farming. However, that makes them perfect for homesteaders!

We are still waiting on Miss Kitty to have her kids (or kid). She is at day 150 now, so really she should give birth today! I've only had one goat go past 150 days, and she did it twice, AND it was Miss Kitty's mama. I suppose I shouldn't be holding my breath today.

9 comments:

MamaTea said...

Guinea Hogs! That's what we thought when we looked at your previous post wondering when Julia's piglets would come. My son wants to raise Guinea Hogs...so he will be happy to see this post (showing the piglets) when he gets up! :) Congrats Julia!! :)

SkippyMom said...

Good job Ms. Julia! They are so darn cute. Sorry you lost one, but I suppose that is the life of a farmer.

I love the Spring when all the babies come. I bet Ms. Julia is reallllly happy. :) And she is a great Momma isn't she?

The Weekend Homesteader said...

I read about Guinea Hogs about a year ago and decided if I ever had a farm where I could raise pork, this would be the breed. Congratulations.

Spinners End Farm said...

Oh my goodness they are so cute. How fun! Congrats to Julia.

Heather said...

Looks like she needs a good rest again!
http://www.flickr.com/photos/glam-up/6107377433/in/photostream/lightbox/

Carol............. said...

Oh, my gosh...how adorable. I love pigs since they always seem to be smiling!

MrKnits said...

We started with a pair of Kune Kunes last summer. I hope things go as well for us as the are for you. What a handsome litter.

Crow said...

I would love to buy a guinea hog. <3 Please write me at bluestoneriverfarm@yahooDOTcom

Heidi said...

Cute, cute, cute! My hubby and I would eventually like to raise pigs, so I will have to check back with you when we're ready!

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