The course at FfosYr Ewig is designed to give you practical and honest information about keeping pigs outdoors. The satisfaction of keeping such wonderful, intelligent and inquistive animals is quickly realised but the pitfalls and problems that can be encountered are made clear and various solutions & ideas are discussed to help overcome them.
The course is a mixture of short theory sessions accompanied by a powerpoint presentation (comprehensive course notes are provided either as a printout or can be emailed) After these sessions there is practical ‘hands on’ time with the pigs helping you to build up confidence working with them and understanding how their natural instincts affect their behaviour.
You will learn how to teach correct ‘dining etiquette’ in your pigs so they are well behaved at feeding time, how to move pigs from one area to another, how to pick up a piglet, how to separate one pig from a group of pigs and very importantly how to load pigs into a trailer without any fuss!
Course details will cover
- Selecting the breed of pig to suit your requirements (home use or for meat sale)
- Advise on buying your first weaners and the legal requirements to get you set up
- Feeding requirements of your pigs (pig nuts/meal or alternative feeds to save money!)
- How to construct secure pig fencing and reduce the tendancy of the pigs to undermine them (this information can save you a lot of time, money & hassle!!)
- Which type of pig arc is best, metal, plastic, wooden or block & render
- How to overcome the problem of ‘mud’ in the pig area in winter & sometimes summer!
- Pig health – how to tell when your pig is sick & what to do
- Learn which are essential vaccinations & wormers
- Learn how to take a pigs temperature, weigh a pig and administer injections/wormers
- Learn how to pick up a piglet, move and load your pigs into a trailer
- Learn how to body score pigs so they don’t get to fat!!
- Learn about breeding techiques/timing, artificial insemination versus use of a boar
- Understand the needs of the gilt/sow when farrowing and piglet care
- Learn how to get your pig to the correct weight/fat level for either pork, bacon or sausages
- Finding the ideal abbattoir and information about the butchery of your pig
- Learn the secret of making delicious bacon & sausages (quick demo!)
- Lastly look at the financial aspects of pig keeping on a small or large scale
Courses start at 9am until 5pm and include a cooked lunch, tea & coffee are available throughout the day. If you want a momento you can buy a specially printed T-shirt or mug to remember your day. Having sampling rare breed pork for lunch you can also purchase joints, chops, sausages & bacon.
For those who have a little more experience with pigs, there is the Advanced Pig Course.