Getting set up for it now (well not just yet, starting this weekend). Getting 1 boar and 2 gilts for our breeders. We decided to do red wattles, going with registered ones just so I can have that as a selling point for my piglets (even though I understand it is totally irrelevant for people buying feeders). We almost went with Idaho pasture pigs, they are super popular in this area, but they seem to have a little bit to much variation in finishing times due to the kunekune that’s in their blood. I don’t want to deal with wintering feeder pigs. Since my whole part of using the pasture and feeding our alfalfa is to cut down on feed costs, it just seems counterproductive. Doing 2x 1/8acre pens for the female breeders, one for the boar. The feeder pigs we keep each year will be pastured all spring/summer and harvested mid fall. Next spring we will just buy a couple mixed breed feeders for this first summer, since ours won’t be ready to breed this fall. From what I read it usually takes between 600-700lbs of feed to get the pig to butcher, this is without pasture or any supplemental input. I plan to supplement the normal swine feed with our alfalfa, all of our extra milk, garden vegetables and obviously the food that’s in the pastures they will be rotated in. I’m really hoping to be able to cut the amount of actual swine feed down close to 20% (that’s what people claim is doable, time will tell), which would make raising them super affordable.
Just starting this thread to get peoples “tricks of trade” you could say, since this is new for me. Read and watched a ton of videos and am feeling comfy, but still love to hear it directly from the source if possible (and I don’t know anyone irl who is really into pigs). Only part so far I’m not too hyped on is the castration part, banding goats is so easy, was shocked when I saw the process for pigs lol