Farrowing – The Arrival of Cute Piglets

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Project Description

The arrival of newly borns always seems a bit of a miracle. We watched our sows, Maple and Wilma getting bigger and bigger. The gestation period (pregnancy) at pigs lasts 3 months, 3 weeks and 3 days. We caught our Tamworth pigs ‘in act’ and had a pretty good idea when they were going to farrow (give birth).

We had ‘birth suites’ built for them, ensuring that the mums were comfortable and the babies safe. Our builders also installed the ‘creep’ rails to prevent accidents and a heat lamp went up. Iodine antiseptic, rubber gloves, and some lubricating gel were at the ready. We were fully geared up for the little ones to arrive. The wait started…

We would get up every 3 hrs for 4 nights in a row and check what was happening. Nothing happened until the 5th night. I went to check on them at 4am, only to find that the nature had taken care of everything. Our Maple did it all by herself! The tiny piglets were dry and clean, and contently suckling their mum. It was such a beautiful sight…

When little piglets are born, they are blind and look a bit like rats, cute ones… I always marvel over the difference in size between the massive sow and her tiny piglets. Tamworth pigs are particularly beautiful when they are born, as they have lovely ginger coats and their ears meet at the back of their heads.


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