This week we took on some new pigs to add to our swine herd: two pregnant Duroc gilts and a sow that farrowed a litter of 12 late last week. If you look at the slide show you cannot help but notice that the piglets are black while their mother is brown. According to the farmer from whom Trent bought the pigs, all three adults were impregnated by a Large Black boar who raided the hen house behind the farmer's back.
When I first saw these animals this morning, I was immediately struck by how lean and athletic they looked compared to our late Berkshire sows. My first thought was that the differences were attributable to variation in breed (genetics) but Trent set me straight when he told me that the Durocs had been raised on pasture (free range) while our Berks had been penned. In other words, the Durocs look more athletic because they have had more exercise. (Duh) And they will continue to get plenty of exercise because we are going to keep these beauties in pasture.
Now check this out: with a little luck, when the other two Duroc gilts farrow, we might have over thirty pigs on the farm. You cannot imagine how thrilling this is for someone who loves charcuterie as much as I do. I'm wiggin.