“Bewilder” the Duroc boar, with a Duroc sow. The sows are enjoying the pasture this spring. I used to house them at my parents’ farm in concrete and dirt lots.
I’m still figuring things out. One of the problems is “rooting,” or the digging behavior pigs exhibit. Since this is permanent pasture, I hate to see the sod turned up, because I’m not sure how I’ll go about fixing it. A sow can do the damage you see in the picture below in fifteen minutes.
I’ve tried “ringing,” putting a piece of metal in their snout to deter rooting. It doesn’t seem to make much difference, and since it doesn’t seem very humane, I’m not doing that any more.
The biggest success I’ve had to reduce the rooting, is by reducing their daily grain feeding. I’m feeding half the grain I used to. The sows seem very satisfied to make up the difference grazing the pasture. They spend hours every day grazing. I think they were rooting more out of boredom. Now they are required to work much harder for their daily calories, walking around in the process, and when they are full, they sleep.
Look at how well-muscled she is, yet still sound walking with femininity. She is also an excellent grazer. Thanks for indulging my bragging.