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Monday, August 22, 2011

Castrating our little piggies....

I really debated long and hard over doing this post. I would much rather be doing a post on new window coverings or something but this is real life on the mini farm. We are what I am calling Google farmers. We have no real knowledge of this life but are winging it all with the help of lots of Google searches.
As many of you know, we are all into raising everything we eat. That includes animals. We have been raising pigs for the last two years. However, in the past we have always made a point to get females because we didn't want to mess with castration. This go round we could not find a single female feeder pig. What a dilemma!!! My honey, Mr. I wanna be a real farm man, decided I can do this. So we brought home two of the cutest little pink pigs that were MALE.

Well, today was the day. After, much research the boys dug in. The pictures aren't great because I didn't even go out there. My Lindsey took all of the pictures. She is a girly, girly, girl but will get all in the middle of anything the boys have going on. It's too funny.

First, they caught the little pigs and put them in the pet carrier to hold them while waiting. They then laid one little pig in an old wheel barrow and held him tight. They cleaned the sac with soap and water. Little pigs are dirty, dirty and we do not want infection.

They are proceeding to make the first very small slit in the testicular sac of one of our little piggies. My son has a very tight hold on our little man.

Here they have already cut the very small slit and are pushing the testical through the slit.

Here's the testical out of the sac. They are about to make a clean cut to seperate the testical. (I know TMI) UGHHH!

They did this on both sides of both pigs. After finishing with each pig, they cleaned the whole sac with iodine to ward off infection.

A few notable things about the whole process were, our pigs did not squeal much like we had seen in videos. My son even wore ear plugs just in case but they really weren't that bad. I don't know if it's because ours are more tame or what. Also, there is little to no bleeding and now the pigs are back in the pasture running around like usual. One is a little slower and stiffer but I am amazed at how well they are doing. Praise the Lord!! God is merciful!!

~~~O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His lovingkindness is everlasting. 1 Chronicles 16:34 ~~~

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Old McDonald had a farm......

Today, we added the second of two pretty pink pigs (Large Whites) to the farm. We got the first one last week. The big draw back on these little sweeties is they are male...... Which means one day this week my honey and my boy will be castrating little piggies. They have never done this themselves before and I will be doing some serious praying!!
In the past we have kept our pigs in a pen and have fed them out before processing them.
We are excited to have this portion of pasture fenced in and our little piggies are now out rooting it all up. Our goal is to have everything we raise here and everything we eat, to be free range grass fed. Here are all of the reasons why: The Amazing Benefits of Grassfed Meat

And here's our little Ramsey. He is definitely becoming all male. I don't really like that part but I guess that's what you have to have if you want to breed sheep. UGH......

And here is the true Old McDonald had a farm or what we affectionately know it as, Mr. Ronnie's farm. We love it!!! We fenced in a pasture right behind the garden area and we now have the turkeys, pretty pink pigs, Phoebe (pot belly), and last but not least Ramsey our St. Croix ram living back there.

We don't intend on keeping them all together forever. We plan to put the pink pigs in their own pasture behind the barn in a few months. Most of the turkeys will be making it to the freezer in October/November. Ramsey will also get his own little pasture, as soon as we get the ewes in the Spring. However, having them all together right now really works, not to mention, it is so entertaining out there. You can see our Retriever/ Lab mix, Daisy, wishes she could join in on the fun. We have been giving them all of the rotting left overs of the garden. They are loving it. This evening they got some watermelon, pears, and muscadines. As soon as I get everything I want out of my garden, which is going to be real soon, I hope to put the little pigs on the garden spot for a couple of months. I want them to root up all of the weeds, to their little hearts content. I am hoping that will help out our weed problem, which has been TERRIBLE this year.

I plan on linking this post up to the Preparedness Challenge and the Barn Hop over at Homestead Revival, one of my all time favorite blogs.


Monday, August 8, 2011

Getting prepared

If there were ever a reason to get somewhat prepared for things to come this might be a good one. We have been on a track of getting ourselves more and more self sufficient and more and more we see that it's the right track to be on.

~~The prudent sees danger and hides himself, but the simple go on and suffer for it. Proverbs 22:3~~
~~ The sluggard does not plow in the Autumn; he will seek at the harvest and have nothing. Proverbs 20:4~~