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Pigs eat farm "waste"

 
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Hi!

I've been wondering about feeding pigs everything that could be considered farm "waste". I've put "waste" in quotation marks, as I believe there isn't any waste per se. It is more a question of finding a use for the material.

I also understand that some things can be or are considered bad for pigs or are prohibited as feed. It might be for a fact or just in case. One example is a ban on food scraps as pig feed in some places.

Looking around I found people feeding the leftovers from poultry slaugther to pigs. What about animals that have died for other reasons? I understand that might be infecious diseases that lead to death of an animal but there there are certainly other illnesses that kill an animal. Would pigs eat it?

Are there pigs that simply have no idea meat from an animal can be feed for them? Can a pig be conditioned to only eat plants, bugs and worms but no raw meat?

I've searched the forum and saw people mentioning that in the past a lot of dead animals were fed to the pigs and the carcasses quickly disappeared. I'm wondering: is it still the case? Does it depend on the type of pig? In my case it would be Iberian Pigs.
 
pollinator
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If the animals involved, both carcass and scavenger, can hold no diseases or parasites in common, disease isn't a problem. This is one reason why stock rotation through paddocks, one species after another, is a good idea. Successive species can graze on the same ground, and the omnivores can benefit from parasites and bugs hatching from feces, turning problems of parasitism into food.

I would be really careful about feeding healthy pigs anything from an animal whose cause of death wasn't determined. That sounds obvious, but I know some people get carried away with ideas of function stacking and frugality and forget about sanitation and a healthy paranoia about communicable disease in livestock and people. I would strongly suggest that you familiarise yourself with the anatomy of those animals you will most likely be looking to turn into pig food, and find out what the top visible causes of mortality are (I mean in an autopsy, not looking at a corpse with its head twisted off).

I am much more sanguine with the idea of, in the case of roadkill, say, hanging the carcass from a rope in the coop, run, or tractor with a bucket upside-down overtop of it (you drill a hole for the rope in the bottom of the bucket and thread the rope through), allowing access to flies and beetles, whose larvae eat the carcass, and then drop down to the floor of the run, to feed hungry chooks. This is especially true if the carcass is mammalian.

So we go from mammals to insects to chickens, then the byproducts of chicken slaughter go to the pigs. I would feel better having the insect and avian stages to break up mammal-to-mammal disease transmission.

This method also makes the raw materials go further.

-CK
 
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We feed our butcher scraps and if we shoot something and don't get to it fast enough the pigs eat it. I'm sure if they find a random dead animal while they're out grazing they eat that too but it's not something we actively feed them and would encourage.

Hubs took a lot of classes in different things for his bachelors that has him demanding an intense worming regimen and full cooking temp on our animals. I feel we are doing ok.
 
Chris Kott
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Elle, what do you worm with?

-CK
 
elle sagenev
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Chris Kott wrote:Elle, what do you worm with?

-CK



Ivermectin for swine
 
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I feed a lot of farm and food waste to my pigs, but I cook it first. Anything that is meat or animal product has to be cooked in order to prevent diseases from being passed along. Does disease transmission really happen? You betcha! A local piggery here had to be completely destroyed and carcasses deeply buried because of some sort of disease they caught via uncooked meats.
 
Chris Kott
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Do you supplement with dietary wormers?

Also, as to the cooked slop, my grandmother, back in post-War Poland, would always cook anything going to the pigs that could be a pathogen vector, though she never explained why. I guess it was a known fact for so long, the reason might've been forgotten.

-CK
 
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I thought this post would be about poop!
Feeding pigs cow poop for instance.
Of course,  insect and microbiological life play a part in that exchange as well.
It seems that every food can benefit from predigestion by microbes and such.
I wonder that more homestead pork producers don't keep chickens or guinea fowl right along side of the pigs.
Furrowing pigs would delight the chickens.
Pig poop would be a paradise.
This pairing seems like a composting super duo.
I do imagine some birds  would be eaten, but not too many.
Oyster mushrooms and   red wrigglers could also  be good links in the chain.
 
elle sagenev
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William Bronson wrote: I thought this post would be about poop!
Feeding pigs cow poop for instance.
Of course,  insect and microbiological life play a part in that exchange as well.
It seems that every food can benefit from predigestion by microbes and such.
I wonder that more homestead pork producers don't keep chickens or guinea fowl right along side of the pigs.
Furrowing pigs would delight the chickens.
Pig poop would be a paradise.
This pairing seems like a composting super duo.
I do imagine some birds  would be eaten, but not too many.
Oyster mushrooms and   red wrigglers could also  be good links in the chain.



I've got mine together. No one has been eaten yet.
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Stephan Schwab
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We as well plan to keep chicken and pigs together in a rotational system.
 
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We feed our pigs and chickens every possible type of farm and domestic waste that we can, and have done for the past four years since we began our smallholding adventure:

All our kitchen green waste, teabags and coffee grounds go on the compost pile - which the chickens and ducks free range over.  The chooks do clean up and turnover, the ducks dig out the worms and snails and fight with the chooks for the particular things they like!

All our non-pig slaughter waste - goats, sheep, geese, turkeys, beef [we buy it by the quarter] - goes to the pigs, together with nuisance culls (over-randy male ducks or roosters - our breeds are too small for eating ourselves), as well. Our 4 dogs get all the pig slaughter waste.  To answer the OP specific question - yes, our pigs consume 100% of the slaughter waste they are given; heads, bones, feathers, feet, etc.

The chickens also get a fair share of slaughter waste and bones with meat on.  We mince a good quantity of slaughter waste and freeze it in blocks for the chickens which they especially appreciate in winter.  We harvest our snails and slugs for the ducks and chickens, and are in teh process of training our duck flock to come into our growing areas to self-harvest bugs, insects, caterpillars, snails and slugs from all our vegetable plants.

The pigs, especially sows with new litters, regularly get put into our small 1 acre horse paddock to co-graze, they save us the task of picking up horse pooh as they seem to vacuum it up... we still have plenty to compost of course!

We dont bother to shred, burn or compost any weeds or plant remains (except potato and tomato haulks) from our garden or vegetable growing areas - it all gets dumped in the pig paddocks where they eat what they want, and leave what they dont want - which then gets turned into the ground helping it to not be so compacted and building the soil so that when we oversow empty or fallow pig paddocks we get pretty good fodder and cover crops without tilling/ploughing.  When we have leftover or old hay, we sometimes mulch an empty growing area in our fodder field with it, adding old corn/wheat/barley any seeds in fact - then when the pigs are put into the area the grain has fermented and the pigs send hours and hours turning that mulch into the soil,pretty much ready to rake/pull rows, before planting our fodder crops - rape, fodder beet, field kale, sugar beet, beetroot, swede - all without mechanical digging.

I think the only vegetables that the pigs will not eat unless cooked are onions and aubergines, and we only give them cooked potatoes either if they are too small from harvest or if they have "turned" in storage.  Other than lemons we havent found a fruit they wont eat, our boar particularly likes tangerines and satsumas as treats when they are plentiful in the winter markets!  Many of our village friends give/dump/ask us to collect their surplus fruit and veg for the pigs - for which we are very grateful, and we get the pick of the unsellable/end of season cabbages and melons/squash from two local market gardens.

We have 2 dozen chickens and 3 dozen ducks and a trio of geese....  they all regularly jump in and out of pig paddocks and we have never lost a bird to the pigs. Our 4 year old boar has a favourite hen who lays her egg every day in his house.  The ducks hang around waiting to dig through the mud of the pig wallows for critters the pigs haven't eaten, the geese graze through anything the pigs havent eaten and the chickens amaze us by breaking up and scratching through every piece of pig pooh they can find. When we want to check pig pooh after worming we have to do it early before we let the chooks out as it is the first thing they go to in the mornings.

The pigs, dogs, ducks and chickens also get a lot of eggs each week, usually hardboiled.

BTW we currently have a 4 year old boar and two breeding sows.  We have managed 4.5 litters a year for the past 3 years, and we rotate them through 6 20m x 25m paddocks, an orchard, a small growing forest, and a 1 acre horse paddock.  They have co-grazed and at times co-accommodated with sheep, goats and our young gelding. We try not to feed the pigs hard feed between October and March unless they are pregnant or feeding a litter - and touch wood we have been successful having raised over 150 piglets.  We are about to begin the process of changing out our breeding trio with new stock - so looking forward to some delicious mature pork and boar meat next spring.

Best of luck to you!!
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Stinging nettles are edible. But I really want to see you try to eat this tiny ad:
Heat your home with the twigs that naturally fall of the trees in your yard
http://woodheat.net
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