Monday, 29 April 2013

The Master at Work

It looks like mum doing all the work here ;) She and I made a sign to place at the pig pen to welcome people and inform them what to feed the pigs. 
 


 
Mum and I also went shopping for some more food:

Nice ground corn

Juicy ground barley

Succulent black sunflower seeds
 
We decided we didn't need to feed them chemicals, genetically modified grains or ground-meat pellets to help them grow - we decided on feeding them only greens, milk, fruit, vegetables and these grains above.

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Pig Update

Hi all,
Along with mum and dad, I have been away in Newcastle for the past week - which is when the pigs started deciding to escape their pen, which was quite distressing! Dad would get a call a day from a concerned villager who noticed that the pigs were out, which meant that we had done something wrong with the fence AND we weren't there to fix it! Because the electrical generator was on the ground, when the rains came the generator shorted out and destroyed itself. The pigs realised the fence was no longer electrified and decided to escape. Thanks to Michael O'Connell, who noticed and went out and bought a new generator and set the fence up again (I will be sure to reimburse him!!). Also thanks to my oma Michael Vaneijk and my auntie Leah Vawser for looking after them while we were away, and thank you to everyone who walked past and noticed something not quite right and called us or tried to help! The support from the village has been astounding, and I feel happy that so many people are coming through the farm to visit the pigs - there must be at least a dozen people visiting a day! Overall, the response has been overwhelmingly positive, even with the pigs escaping, and it makes me grateful that I live here.

The day we got back from Newcastle, mum, dad and I strung another two wire fences into the spare holes in the droppers, and we have added an extra electric wire to the already existing electric wires. We have also replaced the generator with a stronger one with a faster pulse, thanks to my other auntie and mentor Phaedra Reynolds, which should do the trick! As of today, since the new generator, the pigs have not escaped!

Also, they were very itchy for the last few days, and we noticed lice on their backs, so this morning dad spread diatomaceous earth around their pen and over them, and when I fed them this afternoon they were not itching at all.

Can I please remind people that only fruit and vegetables are suitable for the pigs. I have noticed that people have been feeding them teabags and mouldy food. It looks like some people have given them the contents of their compost bin - only fresh fruit and veg please! Secondly, please make sure if you can that the farm gates are closed so that IF the pigs get out again, they cannot completely escape - the gate at Bowering Hill end is regularly left open! Thirdly, please no running or making loud noises around the pigs because they could get scared.

Thank you all,
Aarod

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Cabbage!

video

An Inspiration

A great inspiration to me and one of the reasons I began this project is this man - Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. He has a holistic approach to his meat, and does not like to waste anything from the pig. He passionately loves his pigs and pork alike. And I have got to remember what I bought the pigs for and what part of my project is all about, and that, ultimately, they are going to yield up some delicious meat for me, my family and the community.
River Cottage







Monday, 15 April 2013

FOOD

The piglets are fast growing into pigs. Their bellies are bulging with delicious food that you are all feeding them, as well as their grain. I would ask, however, if they aren't to be fed tea-bags or coffee leftovers!




 
These little guys can run fast, and they sure are loud. Whether or not I have a bucket of food, they will chase me, their ears flapping like kites and their snorts echoing around the wood-lot. They are ALWAYS hungry, and run up to the fence grunting and squealing whenever someone passes by. They certainly enjoy rummaging around in the leaves and dirt around the trees. They couldn't be on a better part of the land - thank you village!

Monday, 8 April 2013

New Day

The pigs are all doing fine! Every now and then they come up against the fence with a little squeal and an electrical crack and they leap away. And they always seem to be hungry. The interest in them from the villagers and school people alike is astounding! Everyone seems enthusiastic and excited. Anyway, here's the latest video.






 

Friday, 5 April 2013

First Night

They survived their first night without a problem! They didn't eat all of their food but that was probably just because they were stressed. This afternoon there was no problem with that - they were eating like two pigs at a trough! Wait...

video

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Their Arrival!

The pigs arrived today! Dad and I picked them up from the breeder's after school. They seem happy and relaxed, even after the long drive from Kangarilla to Aldinga! When I picked them up to put them in their hut, they didn't scream too much, despite the belief that they do. Anyway, they're here, and from now on it is early mornings for me.






 
They will have to be kept inside the hut for a day or two, just to calm down and get comfortable, and to make sure that this is their home and where they will get fed. Once they are settled they can be let out into the wide open world.
 
We decided to use shredded paper instead of straw in order to avoid any form of mite infestation, plus we had a lot of spare paper shreds.