Pigs In Spaaaace…Training Fences
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Anybody out there remember Pigs in Space from the Muppet Show? Well, when I was thinking about what to title this post (series of posts, actually), I couldn’t stop thinking about the title sequence to this show.  While I won’t exactly be writing about pigs in space as depicted in the show, I will be writing about pigs in space…as in pigs on pasture with plenty of space!  But, before we get to that, take a look at this Pigs in Space video, if you’d like.

 

Now back to pigs on pasture. The next few posts will be about this topic and will hopefully give you a good idea of how to manage pigs on pasture.  What a joy it is to see pigs go from their winter quarters to pasture!  Over the last few weeks we have put out several groups.  The majority of pigs still left in barns are those that are still pigaerating or young pigs that will be going out shortly.

Before we can put pigs out, they have to be trained to the electric fence. To do this, we basically set up a mini electric fence in one corner of their enclosure.  We run a wire and set up the battery and charger as usual. We also put a small spring on the wire to allow for some give so the pigs don’t break it by running into it. Hopefully the pictures below will give you an idea of the setup. It is easy to do this setup alone, but in my short experience I have found it is good to have a partner to help keep curious pigs from chewing up your supplies.  The pigs learn about the fence pretty quickly, but we usually give them about a week to be trained.

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Stay tuned for more info on pigs in spaaaace.

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About Heather Juda

Heather was born in Atlanta, GA, but spent 19 years in Colorado before moving to Virginia. She came to Polyface for the 2012 internship and has stayed on as the first female apprentice. She became interested in the food industry when she was in high school, and over the years sought to eat in a healthier way through community gardening, hunting and supporting local farmers. She had a very blessed and “comfortable” life in Colorado complete with a good IT career and condo, but on a calling from the Lord, she left it all to start a new life in farming at Polyface. She looks forward to seeing what the Lord has planned for the future and hopes to use what she learns at Polyface to provide healthy food for people!
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6 Responses to Pigs In Spaaaace…Training Fences

  1. Charles says:

    Another outstanding article Heather. This is exactly the kind of information I love out you guys (gals…lol). This is also one of the biggest reasons I love Polyface. There are no “proprietary” information or “trade secrets” with you. Information freely shared. Keep articles like this coming. Oh, and I loved the Muppets link.

    Charles

  2. Thank you for the info!! I’m getting pigs soon and plan to pasture them. So this kind of post is so helpful to me! 🙂

  3. Sarah says:

    Great post! Thank you, Heather! We recently added pigs to our farm. We would like to raise them on pasture, but we’re not quite sure where to start. Looking forward to the rest of this series!

  4. Ron says:

    Excellent piece on training pigs to an electric fence. My instructor at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College gave us in some class material some pics of how they train their dairy cattle when young to the electric fence in a small yard before letting them out for pastured grazing, then, they only need one wire to keep them enclosed thereafter.

  5. A very idea of doing a fence to Pig, Give some idea about how to train the pigs in your next post

  6. I’ve always ran a wire around the entire piglet pen. Is it just effective having the wire in only the wire?