We were blessed with a beautiful litter of piglets two weeks ago. Clover started nesting right on her due date, carrying all the hay she could find into a big tall pile, the mashing it down and creating a perfect nest. She started laboring in the late afternoon/evening and had the first piglet at 7:45. They came flying out for the next hour and a half, I think we had about 8 in that short amount of time! Then there was a bit of a pause, then a couple more and the placentas were delivered. All the babies start nursing on their own, though we gave a couple a little toweling off. Newborn pigs are quite amazing, they stand up within a couple minutes and walk over to the milk bar, eyes open and mouths hungry. All was said and done by 10:30 PM, 10 happy piglets! Sadly, we lost one at a few days of age, which with pigs is not super unusual. Clover was getting a little worn down and not getting enough to eat or drink and I think she accidentally stepped on the poor little guy. He was the smallest male and although it’s quite sad, the others are thriving and growing. Most importantly, it brought to my attention that Clover wasn’t in the best shape and I was able to get her feed adjusted and get her hydrated and she turned right around.
Now, on to the best part – PHOTOS!
First piglet just born:
A few more, just out and getting some milk:
Sleeping under the heat lamps a few days old:
Two weeks old:
And finally, this photo sums up why we do what we do. Look at Clover’s happy face:
Happy Thanksgiving! We’re on piglet watch here at Schreck’s Acres, waiting impatiently for Clover to farrow her second litter. She’s due today or tomorrow, and a big healthy litter and healthy mama with be cause for celebration. She certainly looks ready:
She’s got quite the birthing suite. If only all hogs could have this much space to do their thing! She even has a ball to play with. We don’t want a bored mama.
The areas in the corners are “creep” areas, where the piglets can lay away from Clover, to minimize the chances of injury. We will have heat lamps for them to warm up under. Hopefully we will have piglet photos very soon!
In other species news, we welcomed two steers to the property, for 4H and FFA County Fair projects. Fergie and Apollo are best buds.
Our three Berkshire hogs are growing nicely and keeping us entertained. They are very personable, nosey little gals who really want to know everything that’s going on, when they’re not hunkered down in their self-made beds in the woods.
We hope you all have a relaxing and fun day with family and friends. Cheers!
Definitely feels like spring. The days are getting longer, which is nice because I don’t have to do morning chores in the dark anymore. The bees and flies and mosquitos have arrived, and green grass is everywhere. We have a group of Cornish cross meat birds and some new layers who are about 6 weeks old. And of course, Clover the sow, Joey the steer and Bob the rent-a-friend companion lamb. He gets put in with whomever needs company and someone to butt around, he gets equally pushed around by the steer and the sow.
Clover’s piglets are 4 months now, growing nicely and all ear tagged as possible show pigs for fair. They are eating non-medicated feed, milk, hay and apples and will be going to their final destination late June. One will be available at the Junior Livestock at the El Dorado County Fair on June 14th. The remainder will go to Wolf Pack Meats for USDA processing and be available by the cut.
Joey the steer will also be auctioned off at the Jr Auction, and he is being fed non-medicated, antibiotic free feed.
It’s a busy time of year, I need to get my garden in and still have potatoes to plant that are about a month late. Keeping the chickens out of the garden is the big challenge to they don’t destroy my plants.
Enjoy the season, it’s so beautiful outside.