Pigs have shelled their own nuts for millennia. Young pigs might need to be shown that there is something good inside. Ripe nuts are preferred. A week in the sun might help. I've heard that horse chestnuts are less palatable.
I'll be planting at least some American Chestnut throughout parts of my pasture for that specific reason - they have a nice broad shaded area once mature and what I can't gather the pigs will. Planned on ordering from these folks - http://www.redfernfarm.com/
Also, I've found it takes my Berks a while to get used to a food that's a lot different than one they've seen before. Shell them and mix them with the regular food a few times and I suspect they are shelling them on their own before too long.
Jose Reymondez wrote:I thought horse chestnuts were toxic, especially to horses.
Turns out that you're right. I've seen deer eat them, but most domestic animals can't. Small quantities were used medically for horses and people. They're also not a true chestnut but a distant relative. Ground up, they make a soapy stain remover. I couldn't find info on toxic effects for fish, so a few catfish may be poisoned for the advancement of science.
10 Podcast Review of the book Just Enough by Azby Brown