[NAFEX] Pigs for preparing new ground

Hélène Dessureault interverbis at videotron.ca
Wed May 4 09:45:58 EDT 2005

I found your description amusing as this is very true. Pigs do test the
electric fences and once they start you have to become very creative to keep
them in.
What you did not mention is shade. Pigs like to be cool. This has been my
experience. Mid-day sun is a direct incentive to test fences.
Once, just before going away on holidays, I moved our two pigs to a fresh
area to dig, along with their electric fence and their A-frame shelter
providing cover from rain and sun for the two of them.
However, there was no other shade in this enclosure and I cannot began to
tell what kind of troubles our house guests had to face starting around 11
am everyday, until they realised the pigs were quite content to go spend the
afternoon in the cool barn.
When I came back, I moved them to a new area with noon shade and the
situation improved except that they were now in the habit of charging
through the electric fence at their convenience. Their escape would be
preceded by mounting squealing in anticipation of electric shocks from a
fence set for maximum impact.
Have you ever heard of pig black mail? The least little disatisfaction and
off they go.
My advice is to make sure there is plenty of shade.
Hélène, zone 3-4
----- Original Message -----
From: "Jim Fruth" <jfruth at uslink.net>
To: <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Wednesday, May 04, 2005 8:11 AM
Subject: [NAFEX] Pigs for preparing new ground

> Bruce Hansen asked:
>     Did you have any trouble with the pigs getting through the fence? How
> big
> (weight) were they when you removed them from the plot. I plan on doing
> you did to three acres (although for a different reason).
>     Local farmers advised me to use a weed-burner electric fence partly
> because the pigs quickly develop a disdain for anything less.  The
> weed-burner electric fence is also necessary because, as the name implies,
> it burns off weeds as they grow up and touch the wire - this is important
> because the pigs test the wire everyday to determine if it is still
> They'd put their nose to it, get zapped, let out a youlp, then do it again
> the next day.  My pigs only got out once but a neighbor had an old sow
> got out everyday; after she tested to see if it was on, she'd back up
> 50', start squealing (in advance of getting zapped a few times), then run
> straight through the wires.  Then she was out for the day and refused to
> come back until feeding time.
>     Pigs are notorious for doing the opposite of what you want them to do.
> The only way I could lead them with a rope was to tie it to both their
> legs.  To get them to move, I'd yank their legs out from under her and
> backward pressure as she got up, then yank them out from under again, ad
> infinitum, each time gaining 8" in the direction we were going.  I waited
> until they were a good butchering size (+/_ 100 lbs.) before terminating
> project.
> --
> Jim Fruth
> Brambleberry Farm
> Pequot Lakes, MN
> www.bberryfarm.com
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