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guinea pigs as meat... my journal as i go  RSS feed

 
kadence blevins
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person i got long haired boar from got a hold of me the other day. wanted to know if i'd want 2 more. free. they are the boars half siblings. few more weeks and i'll have em.

also someone is going to be trading me 3 sows for 2 of my rabbits. might have them before christmas. not sure.

so for now i'm working on plans for what should hopefully be the best guinea pig tractor. at least for me. and once my rabbit litters get old enough to sell i will hopefully be able to get anything i might need to put the tractor together.


so.... is anyone other then me actually getting into this? anyone at all?
 
kadence blevins
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trying to find if any universities or anyone in the USA is currently working on guinea pigs/cuy as Andrew Parker said. so far not really any luck but i did find this... not too keen on scientific language of it but something to look at anyways...

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9719838

"Results of a 12 month study of traditional guinea-pig production in the western highlands of Cameroon are reported. The mean age of guinea-pigs (Cavia porcellus L.) at first parturition, kidding interval and litter size at birth were 126.30 +/- 10.40 d, 64.8 +/- 1.70 d and 1.63 +/- 0.26 kids respectively. The annual reproductive rate was 9.18 kids/breeding doe while the doe post-partum weight was 530 g. Mean body weights at birth, presumed weaning (21 d) and 15 weeks of age were 78.36 +/- 3.20, 147.51 +/- 8.10 and 418.88 +/- 32 g respectively. Type of birth and sex had a significant effect on body weight at all ages. Birth weight dropped significantly from 83.88 +/- 2.87 g for singles to 81.57 +/- 3.40 g for twins, 74.25 +/- 2.39 g for triplets and 73.75 +/- 4.12 g for quadruplets. These differences were maintained to maturity (15 weeks). Males were generally heavier than females. Mortality rates were relatively high among kids: 24% at birth, 39% at 3 weeks and 40% at 15 weeks. Productivity indices were 0.827 kg of young weaned per doe per year, 1560 g of young weaned per kg of doe per year and 2.52 kg of young weaned per kg metabolic weight (kg 0.75) of female per year."
 
Grant Fulcher
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kadence blevins wrote:person i got long haired boar from got a hold of me the other day. wanted to know if i'd want 2 more. free. they are the boars half siblings. few more weeks and i'll have em.

also someone is going to be trading me 3 sows for 2 of my rabbits. might have them before christmas. not sure.

so for now i'm working on plans for what should hopefully be the best guinea pig tractor. at least for me. and once my rabbit litters get old enough to sell i will hopefully be able to get anything i might need to put the tractor together.


so.... is anyone other then me actually getting into this? anyone at all?


I love your work, very appreciative. What attracts me most is they are able to be free ranged in herds no cages or seperating b/c of fighting or digging out etc, easy to feed without commercial bought pellets unlike rabbits. What Im concerned about is that rabbits are delecious and can be in a variety of dishes, GPs remind me of eating a rat's and I heard have a musky taste? What do they taste like?
 
kadence blevins
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Grant Fulcher wrote:
kadence blevins wrote:person i got long haired boar from got a hold of me the other day. wanted to know if i'd want 2 more. free. they are the boars half siblings. few more weeks and i'll have em.

also someone is going to be trading me 3 sows for 2 of my rabbits. might have them before christmas. not sure.

so for now i'm working on plans for what should hopefully be the best guinea pig tractor. at least for me. and once my rabbit litters get old enough to sell i will hopefully be able to get anything i might need to put the tractor together.


so.... is anyone other then me actually getting into this? anyone at all?


I love your work, very appreciative. What attracts me most is they are able to be free ranged in herds no cages or seperating b/c of fighting or digging out etc, easy to feed without commercial bought pellets unlike rabbits. What Im concerned about is that rabbits are delecious and can be in a variety of dishes, GPs remind me of eating a rat's and I heard have a musky taste? What do they taste like?


thanks
i have been wondering the same things about the guinea pig meat. i've not been able to find much on what it tastes like. one person on here i believe said it was good but had an odd aftertaste that was sort of unpleasant and stayed in his mouth. another person elsewhere i believe said guinea pig is much like rabbit only it has a sweeter taste.
though i am beginning to search for recipes. i think most recipes will be from peru and south america how they eat them. i think for more "modern" and varied recipes it is something that will have to be tested with time. i think an initial animal being cooked will be needed to see how it tastes then testing it in recipes.
here are recipes i've found so far...

A typical recipe for baked or barbequed cuy with a hot sauce:
• 3 or 4 cuys
• 50 grams of ground toasted corn, or cornmeal
• 2 kilos of parboiled potatoes, cut in slices
• 8 cloves of garlic
• 6 fresh hot peppers, either red or yellow
• ½ cup oil
• ½ cup water
• salt, pepper and cumin to taste
Rub the cuys with a mix of the pepper, salt, pepper and cumin and bake. You can also skewer over a barbeque.

Prepare a sauce with the oil, peppers, garlic and cornmeal with the water from the potatoes or broth. Cook a few minutes until the peppers are cooked. When tender, place the meat in a serving dish and spoon the sauce over it. Serve with the boiled potatoes.

.......
4 cuys
• 1 teaspoon hot pepper
• 1 tablespoon pisco
• garlic to taste
• 6 fresh hot peppers, either red or yellow
• 1/4 cup oil
• salt, pepper to taste Season the cleaned cuys with salt, pepper, hot pepper and pisco. Fry in oil five minutes or until cooked.
Serve with a hot pepper sauce, potatoes, either fried or boiled and a salad of cucumber, tomato, lettuce and onion.

........
2 lrg animals
2 x red onions, minced
4 x cloves of garlic, minced
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp white pepper
2 tsp of salt
2 Tbsp. water
2 Tbsp. oil
annatto (for coloring)
2 Tbsp. lard
annatto coloring
2 x white onions, minced
2 x cloves garlic
salt
healthy pinch of cumin
1 lrg c. of roasted and grnd coffee with peanuts
3 1/2 c. lowfat milk
Directions
Mix ingredients well and spread over the inside and outside of the animal. Allow to marinate for up to one day to allow flavors to meld. Before roasting, remove excess marinade to avoid scalding. The spit should be inserted into the back part of the animal and exit from the jaw. Once on the stick, tie the front and back feet, stretching out the legs. Put on grill, turning manually. Continue to apply lard to the skin to avoid drying out the meat. The cuy is ready when the skin is close to bursting. Serve with boiled potatoes sprinkled with coriander, chilies, and the following peanut sauce. If your community is especially progressive, rice may be substituted for the potatoes.
Peanut Dipping Sauce:Fry onions till golden, then add in other ingredients. Cook at low heat for at least half an hour.

........
*Cuy Picante Huanuqueño Style*

*Ingredients: *

*- **2 large guinea pigs*

*- **1 tablespoon crushed garlic*

*- **1½ teaspoon salt *

*- **1½ pepper*

*- **1½ teaspoon cumin powder*

*- **2 tablespoons aji panca (a Peruvian deep-clay red chile, liquefied in a blender)*

*- **2 tablespoons aji mirasol (a Peruvian dark yellow chile, liquefied in a blender)*

*- ** 1 cup cooking oil or margarine *

*- **10 scallions *

*- **The guinea pigs’ hearts, livers (and in an authentic version, also the intestines, thoroughly cleaned) *

*- **1 tablespoon of crushed peanuts*

*- **8 yellow potatoes boiled and skinned*

*Preparation: *

*Cut and quarter the guinea pigs, salt and pepper, then fry until golden brown. Put aside in a warm dish. In a heavy skillet, lightly greased with a few splashes of oil, combine the garlic, aji panca and aji mirasol over high heat. Mixing and scraping the ingredients from the bottom of the pan to keep it from sticking; continue until the mixture is thoroughly cooked to a golden brown. Chop the scallions, separating the white bulbs from the green stalks. Add the finely chopped scallion bulbs to the pan with the cumin. In a separate pan, combine the hearts, livers and peanuts and cook until thoroughly done, then place in a food processor or blender to liquefy. Add and mix with aji-garlic mixture in heavy skillet. Add guinea pig pieces, cooking for 10 to 15 minutes. Let stand for at least 15 minutes. Serve over sliced boiled potatoes sliced.
Serves four.*

........
"Picante de cuy" - Guinea Pig with spices
The whole guinea pig is marinated overnight in spices, including cumin, black pepper, paprika and dried red chillies.
Red and yellow peppers are also liquidised and added to the marinade just before cooking.
After marinating, the meat is barbecued and served whole, but split in two like a fillet.

...........
"Cuyes en salsa de mani" - Guinea pigs with peanut sauce
The guinea pig is seasoned whole with salt and pepper and then slowly deep fried in vegetable oil.
It is then served with a creamy peanut sauce and traditionally accompanied by white rice, fried yuccas and boiled sweet potatoes.

...........
Fried Guinea Pig (Ayacucho-style)CUY CHAQTADO
1 guinea pig, de-haired, gutted, and cleaned
1/2 c. flour
1/4 - 1/2 t. ground cuminsalt and black pepper to taste
1/2 c. oil
Pat dry the skin of the guinea pig and rub in the cumin, salt, and pepper. Preheat oil. Dust the carcass with the flour and place it on its back in the oil, turning to cook both sides. Alternately, the guinea pig can be cut and fried in quarters.Serve with boiled potato or boiled manioc root, and a salad of cut tomatoes and slivered onions bathed in lime juice and a bit of salt.




list of peruvian dishes..... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Peruvian_dishes
 
kadence blevins
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got a return email from one of the many people i have been emailing about guinea pigs as meat...

"Dear Kadence: I have checked with our Meat Inspection Division and our Animal Health Division and we are not aware of anyone in Ohio or elsewhere in the USA raising guinea pigs for meat. Good luck with your search.

Sincerely,

Chuck Kirchner

Division of Food Safety"

this is division of food safety ohio btw. i sent 5 emails i think to different people via ohio dept of agri.
 
kadence blevins
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this is interesting. in this video the guy (from USA, is vegetarian but ate cuy at the peru family's house to taste it and not be rude) "it tastes like how i remember chicken honestly. just more chewey"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=huhiDQR69E0

i think "chewey"ness could be altered by cooking method though. will have to see.
 
Morgan Morrigan
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Thanks so much for putting up this hands on account.

Was seriously considering them, and advocating a bit here, because of the grazing habits, and the low maintence.

Am actually the most excited because of the heat tolerance, and the lower susceptibility to drafts in the winter.

Would actually suggest to try supplementing with some sea salt, or Elete in the water. Am realizing that all us animals are attempting to get our bodies to a seawater level of minerals and have decided to quit taking other supplements.

http://www.seafriends.org.nz/oceano/seawater.htm#composition

and there was a thread up about making our own sea salt that pointed out that the first evaporation dropped out all the calcium chloride, the bitter tasting element.

broke down and bought some online, there are a couple, but like these folks info. (not affiliated)

http://seaagri.com/

seems like it works fab as grazing grass additive, and then you dont have to give supplements.
 
Kate Maldonado
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Hi,
I've been thinking about doing this exact same thing-raising guineas and blogging about it. I ate them in Ecuador and I thought they were pretty good. My dad's ecuadorian, and of course, his mom had the best recipe for cuy. They keep them in the house there, and there's a general belief that they're little bad-vibes sensors, so if someone comes close to your pigs and the cuys start freaking out, beware of that person.
I was also wondering how you plan to dispatch them. Best of luck!
 
kadence blevins
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very interesting on the sea salt thing. i will have to look at that more.

Kate, i hope you can give some experience on what they really taste like! that seems to be the biggest unknown right now haha.

as per dispatching, there seems to be a few ways i've heard of doing it.
1) smack on the back of the head, slit throat and bleed out.
2) slit throat and bleed out
3) hold back feet and smack head against a large post/corner of barn/etc, slit throat and bleed out
4) hold head in one hand and back feet in the other, swiftly pull neck backwards towards feet (dislocates neck), slit throat and bleed out

personally i also have meat rabbits and am going to make a kill board, basically same idea as a "rabbit wringer" ( http://www.therabbitwringer.com/ ) but being that the gpigs have fat little necks i'm not sure if a smaller version would work for them. i will most likely practice alot on a stuffed animal and use the smack on the back of the head method.
 
kadence blevins
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made a video of my current setup. short and camera hated my lighting but shows you what i have so far. i am going to make another of the spot outside i will likely be putting them.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hv2MG-t1ZD0

give a holler if the link isnt working (:
 
kadence blevins
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this is a very rough estimate of how many young i think i could produce in 1yr/2yrs. the .... lines seperate different "sketches" i was tossing around in my head. this doesnt account for lost sows. so that would change things. as well as you never really know how many babies you will get. so for my estimates i guessed randomly at litter sizes for the amount of sows. example: 4 sows, litters of 3, 2, 1, 2. or 6 sows, litters of 4, 2, 1, 3, 2, 3. and when i add in keeper sows from previous litters i always put in that amount of babies that those first timers all had 1 each, since that seems to be the norm. dates are estimated dates from ( http://www.gestationcalculator.com/other/guinea-pig-calculator ) and in these "sketches" sows are kept with the boar at birth and are bred back right after birthing. keeper sows are added to the sows at 4months old. i realize all litters won't all happen together like this because each sow will fall into her heat at her own time and may lose a litter or not catch every time. but for me this is a decent way to see what i could possibly be looking at numberwise.
...................................................................................
1/1/13... 2 females
3/10/13... 2 females, 4 babies
5/17/13... 2 females, 5 babies
7/24/13... 2 females, 3 babies
9/30/13... 2 females, 4 babies
12/7/13... 2 females, 3 babies
***total babies: 19***
....................................................................................
1/1/13... 2 females
3/10/13... 2 females, 4 babies
5/17/13... 2 females, 5 babies
7/24/13... 2 females, 3 babies
9/30/13... 4 females, 6 babies
12/7/13... 7 females, 11 babies
***total babies: 29***
.....................................................................................
1/1/13... 6 females
3/10/13... 6 females, 6 babies
5/17/13... 6 females, 11 babies
7/24/13... 6 females, 8 babies
9/30/13... 6 females, 12 babies
12/7/13... 6 females, 9 babies
***total babies: 46***
.................................................................................
1/1/13... 6 females
3/10/13... 6 females, 6 babies
5/17/13... 6 females, 11 babies
7/24/13... 6 females, 8 babies
9/30/13... 8 females, 14 babies
12/7/13... 10 females, 24 babies
***total babies: 63***
...............................................................................
1/1/13... 6 sows
3/10/13... 6 sows, 6 babies (keep 2 sows)
5/17/13... 6 sows, 11 babies (keep 2 sows)
7/24/13... 6 sows, 8 babies (keep 2 sows)
9/30/13... 8 sows, 14 babies (keep 4 sows)
12/7/13... 10 sows, 24 babies (keep 6 sows)
2/13/14... 12 sows, 29 babies (keep 8 sows)
4/22/14... 16 sows, 34 babies
6/29/14... 22 sows, 48 babies
9/5/14... 30 sows, 60 babies
11/12/14... 30 sows, 52 babies
1/19/14... 30 sows, 63 babies
***total babies: 349 babies, minus kept sows: 325***
.....................................................................................
~*~ starting with 30 sows from last ~*~
3/28/14... 30 sows, 50 babies
6/4/14... 30 sows, 63 babies
8/11/14... 30 sows, 48 babies
10/18/14... 30 sows, 54 babies
12/25/14... 30 sows, 57 babies
3/3/15... 30 sows, 65 babies
***total babies: 337 babies***
.....................................................................................
 
Abe Connally
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I bought a pair of guinea pigs, today. $10 each. The male is a long hair, female is short, both are long, maybe 1-2 months old. For now, they are family pets, but I'm hoping to breed them for meat. If it goes well, we'll get more.
 
kadence blevins
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Abe Connally wrote:I bought a pair of guinea pigs, today. $10 each. The male is a long hair, female is short, both are long, maybe 1-2 months old. For now, they are family pets, but I'm hoping to breed them for meat. If it goes well, we'll get more.


thats great (:

i am now up to 2 boars and 5 sows. 2 are for sure bred, 3 are possibly bred.
and i am getting a boar and 2 sows from someone who breeds them to be large. they are runnin about 4-5lbs.

best of luck!
 
Abe Connally
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wow, awesome on the big ones!

these I got are about 2-3 months old, from what the internet says about their weight and length. We'll see what they do.

I'm kinda planning to keep the breeders as kinda pets and then harvest the babies. We'll see how that works out.
 
Devon Olsen
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kadence blevins
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Abe Connally wrote:wow, awesome on the big ones!

these I got are about 2-3 months old, from what the internet says about their weight and length. We'll see what they do.

I'm kinda planning to keep the breeders as kinda pets and then harvest the babies. We'll see how that works out.


thats how i am with animals. breeders can be pets but young get sold or eaten. though i have the farm mentality that i know i might have to put one of my breeders out of its misery for illness or injury and i will do it myself. it can be hard on the heart but thats what it means to know where my food comes from.
 
kadence blevins
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Devon Olsen wrote:subscribed

any pics of your progress?


need to get update pics and vids. dealing with a mystery rabbit death today. will do some tomorrow though. (:
 
kadence blevins
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i swear i havent forgotten! hahaha. my camera decided to die... so had to borrow a camera. will be getting more pics tomorrow.

long haired sow and boar. she is bred to him. due about feb 14.



me holding her rib area to show her actual body shape better


she is HUGE! hahaha




i believe of the others that the silver sow is due right after the long hair sow, and that the himi sows and new abby sow are all pregnant for march.
 
kadence blevins
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finally got the new update video put together!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mANm0eQ43iM
 
Devon Olsen
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kadence blevins
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yay i'm back!
have some updates. was trying to post them but forums was messed up and i couldnt post or message or anything. but its not fighting with me anymore lol.

so here is the first update:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ik8jEbMXyRo

and the second update:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbhrbBgxHN8

would love to hear if anyone has been inspired to start their own guinea pig herd! or if anyone who already had one would like to share how theirs are doing! (:
 
kadence blevins
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good question on the other thread so i'm copying it over to here. for ease of finding for me at least (:

kadence blevins wrote:
Devon Olsen wrote:would you mind sharing your ideas for protecting diversity in your "herd"?


i admit i hadnt actually written or drawn this out yet until i saw this. hahaha naughty me.
note that in all possibilities i would *always* be removing young boars into a boar pen or boar colony.

one idea is a several pen version.
pen 1: starter sows (4)
pen 2: keeper sows from sow #1
pen 3: keeper sows from sow #2
pen 4: keeper sows from sow #3
pen 5: keeper sows from sow #4
pen 6: keeper boars
pen 7: eating/selling boars
pen 8: eating/selling sows

if i would go this method then it would probably be setup like the crianza de cuyes farm videos with decent sized breeding pens and bringing forage and feeds to them. this method i would need to tattoo the boars or something to keep track of who was who's baby. for this i would probably have (since they have small ears) like left ear be S2 for sow 2, and right ear be B1 for boar 1. this way in the beginning at least if remember offhand which sow and boar is which then i can just look and see "ok this boar is from S4 and B2" or if i need to pick a boar for breeding pen 3 then i look through for ones not from S2.
or i could pick a really nice boar from S2 to see if that brings up even bigger/average/smaller piggles or also any certian coloring, to watch for roans and dalmations, which on one hand are expensive for good colored ones and on the other hand can carry deadly genes causing stillbirths and other things that will end up as dead piggles.

i'm not sure yet if i want to tattoo the sows as well or not. i think i'm leaning towards yes on that because if i start getting nice big piggles from certian sows or certian boars on a certian sow then i will want to replace other not as good producing ones with the better ones. so i will want to know which sows were from which starter sow.

alternately if i can make more pens then i could just add on with more pens. though i think i'll have more then plenty with that amount of pens! hahaha.



another idea would be if you want to run them in sow colony and boar colony style then setup some pens to put certian sows in for breeding. this would mean everyone would need tattooed or marked somehow if you want to really watch the genetics and make sure to not get inbred too much. and just record keeping who goes in the breeding pens with who. though i only have 3 sows together outside and i will honestly say i know my boys are from the himi sows (one baby each) but i dont know who had who because i just went out to find 2 more babies then i had before. that is the downside of this method.


though i think some ways to make it minimal inbreeding in this method...
1) run one boar for about a month with all the sows. then all the babies will be from that boar and you can tattoo them as being from him. then next you run an unrelated boar with the sows and do the same thing. this way you can at least keep track of the dads side.
2) run one boar for about 5/6 months with the sows. trade him out for an unrelated boar, another 5/6months. back to the first boar 5/6 months. back to the second boar 5/6 months. this way you dont need to keep records but can insure that they arent getting really inbred. though after 2 years you should probably think about getting a new unrelated boar or have the best of the best picked from your boar babies with those 2. but if you decide to go with your keeper boars then you will get more inbreeding though i dont think it would be too much until a few years in (like 5?) when you know everyone is related now and you need an unrelated boar.


another idea would be to have 2 sow colonies with all unrelated sows in each. then an unrelated boar in each. about every 2 months switch the boars from one colony to the other. another no record keeping option without too much inbreeding worry until several years in.

another idea would be 2 colonies like the last one, but keeping the one boar in each at all times. after 2 or 3 years you choose the strongest, biggest, healthiest of all the boars from each and put it as the breeder in the other colony. rinse, wash, repeat
you could also do this with 3 or more smaller colonies. that would make it longer before you'd really need new blood in them. and lets say you have 4 smaller colonies like this (say 2 sows per colony), you could take the boar in each pen and every 2/4 months just put him in the next colony over and that boar goes into the next one over, etc. then after you did this a while and had all the sows in each you could feed, then you pick the 4 biggest, healthiest, best of the best boars and off ya go again. i think this would be the best for no record keeping and least probablility of getting inbred.

 
Devon Olsen
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thank you for the detailed response
i am personally thinking that small scale, indoor setup would be more ideal for me, and that outdoor space could be used for chickens or somthing to satisfy the eggs that i normally have in my diet
- as for ID of individuals for keeping records could you perhaps get yourself some collars that were color coded for your breeders and then make some tags for them that can be removed and either replaced or erased and rewritten for a new breeder, rather than tattooing? it just seems tattooing may be a pain in the rear for you, painful for them, and might waste some skin or fur, which may not be something you use, but im sure you could find a use for it somewhere... also might be cheaper initial cost for equipment than a tattoo machine would be
 
kadence blevins
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Devon Olsen wrote:thank you for the detailed response
i am personally thinking that small scale, indoor setup would be more ideal for me, and that outdoor space could be used for chickens or somthing to satisfy the eggs that i normally have in my diet
- as for ID of individuals for keeping records could you perhaps get yourself some collars that were color coded for your breeders and then make some tags for them that can be removed and either replaced or erased and rewritten for a new breeder, rather than tattooing? it just seems tattooing may be a pain in the rear for you, painful for them, and might waste some skin or fur, which may not be something you use, but im sure you could find a use for it somewhere... also might be cheaper initial cost for equipment than a tattoo machine would be


collars wouldnt stay on with their fat necks. if they did i think they would choke them though. i had thought of something like the livestock markers such as this:
http://www.tractorsupply.com/producer-s-pride-reg-livestock-markers-assorted-colors-pack-of-3-1019792

cheap enough though would need reapplied periodically. if you used these you could have 3 boars and have each color be for which boar its dad is.

poultry leg bands wouldnt work for their chubby legs and as babies their feet would slip right out and the band would be like a giant cast on its leg.

tattooing is less painful then the other options other then the markers. they do have ear tags that are used in other countries (very rarely in the USA from what i've found) and as thin as their ears are it seems like it wouldnt take hardly anything at all for them to be ripped out.
whereas a tattoo ya wipe ink on, clamp real quick, wipe with cotton ball, wipe vaseline over it. done deal. permanent, wont rip out or fall off, least chance of infection.

plus i just traded the longhair young boar for a tattooer (: yay! looks like i'll be able to use it on the guinea pigs and rabbits. they tend to run higher then i like to pay for things but this trade is just about free for me.
here is a video using a similar rabbit clamp tattooer to the one i have now:
 
Jack Kovac
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kadence blevins wrote:good question on the other thread so i'm copying it over to here. for ease of finding for me at least (:

kadence blevins wrote:
Devon Olsen wrote:would you mind sharing your ideas for protecting diversity in your "herd"?


i admit i hadnt actually written or drawn this out yet until i saw this. hahaha naughty me.
note that in all possibilities i would *always* be removing young boars into a boar pen or boar colony.

****big 'ol snip****.... i think this would be the best for no record keeping and least probablility of getting inbred.



I'm a little tired so pardon me if you actually covered this in your several methods. Another method that comes to mind is the "rolling method" (which I first saw in Harvey Ussery's "The Small-Scale Poultry Flock" but I've since seen it elsewhere). It's supposedly a pretty low-recordkeeping method.

-Start 3 (or more is better) flocks/herds with at least one boar (or closely related boars) and several unrelated sows (whatever number the boars can cover).
-Label each herd A, B, C, etc. Think of it as a last name in a traditional European marriage pattern.
-When the baby sows (sowlets?) from each litter are old enough to be bred, they are permanently reassigned to the next herd (A sows go to B, B go to C, C to A). This is now their new home and they are never passed on.
-Baby boars (boarbies?) that you want to keep for breeding STAY in Dad's herd. This can be either "taking over the family 'business'" or helping Dad on the farm (retire Dad or keep him, your choice).
-This method completely eliminates brother-sister and father-daughter matings. The only inbreeding possible is mother-son, and this can be eliminated by retiring Mom or temporarily removing her.
-With three herds, the closest breeding would be great-grandfather to great-granddaughter (with 4 herds it's great-great, etc.) which is generally considered linebreeding (except the possible mom-son or aunt-nephew, which WOULD be inbreeding, but is okay if you're selectively improving your herd).
-According to Ussery, with three flocks, you can go 10 years without concern about excessive inbreeding and 20 years with 5 flocks. Depending on how young you breed, it's probably about half that time with cavies. Chickens can be bred around 6 months (?) but I think mostly it's about 11 months.
-You can pretty easily control the birthrate in a particular herd by removing the boars temporarily.

I think I explained that reasonably well, but I've been up all night at work so... And sorry about the puns and wordplay, I get punchy this time of daynight.

 
kadence blevins
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Jack Kovac wrote:
kadence blevins wrote:good question on the other thread so i'm copying it over to here. for ease of finding for me at least (:

kadence blevins wrote:
Devon Olsen wrote:would you mind sharing your ideas for protecting diversity in your "herd"?


i admit i hadnt actually written or drawn this out yet until i saw this. hahaha naughty me.
note that in all possibilities i would *always* be removing young boars into a boar pen or boar colony.

****big 'ol snip****.... i think this would be the best for no record keeping and least probablility of getting inbred.



I'm a little tired so pardon me if you actually covered this in your several methods. Another method that comes to mind is the "rolling method" (which I first saw in Harvey Ussery's "The Small-Scale Poultry Flock" but I've since seen it elsewhere). It's supposedly a pretty low-recordkeeping method.

-Start 3 (or more is better) flocks/herds with at least one boar (or closely related boars) and several unrelated sows (whatever number the boars can cover).
-Label each herd A, B, C, etc. Think of it as a last name in a traditional European marriage pattern.
-When the baby sows (sowlets?) from each litter are old enough to be bred, they are permanently reassigned to the next herd (A sows go to B, B go to C, C to A). This is now their new home and they are never passed on.
-Baby boars (boarbies?) that you want to keep for breeding STAY in Dad's herd. This can be either "taking over the family 'business'" or helping Dad on the farm (retire Dad or keep him, your choice).
-This method completely eliminates brother-sister and father-daughter matings. The only inbreeding possible is mother-son, and this can be eliminated by retiring Mom or temporarily removing her.
-With three herds, the closest breeding would be great-grandfather to great-granddaughter (with 4 herds it's great-great, etc.) which is generally considered linebreeding (except the possible mom-son or aunt-nephew, which WOULD be inbreeding, but is okay if you're selectively improving your herd).
-According to Ussery, with three flocks, you can go 10 years without concern about excessive inbreeding and 20 years with 5 flocks. Depending on how young you breed, it's probably about half that time with cavies. Chickens can be bred around 6 months (?) but I think mostly it's about 11 months.
-You can pretty easily control the birthrate in a particular herd by removing the boars temporarily.

I think I explained that reasonably well, but I've been up all night at work so... And sorry about the puns and wordplay, I get punchy this time of daynight.



no that was a good explanation. i think i understand it correctly. very good idea.

only thing is i would be watchful of boars fighting. fighting isnt common for guinea pigs but boars can get territorial of their harem. if the young boars were born into the herd or were moved to another pen very young (like 2-4wks) then there should be minimal chance of fighting. but there is always that chance and something to be watchful of.

 
kadence blevins
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FINALLY have them!! the large-bred GPs.

bad news is it turns out one of the sows died on the way up /: lady who had them didnt tell me until day before i got them >.< would have at least been nice to know...

but the red boar and multicolor sow are settling in well. cant wait to see what his babies look like (:
uploading video now will post it when its done.
 
kadence blevins
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finally got an update video made (: got busy with some things and havent butchered one yet. when i do i'll make a video of it too and cooking/tasting it. i'm pretty excited to see how it is!
the new sow i'd gotten had two babies. one of the himi sows had a single baby. not sure if the other himi, silver, young black sows are gonna have any.
might be gettin some new ones soon. might be gettin 2 free boars and proven sows from same person my silver sow came from. and might be tradin some rabbits for a trio of guineapigs (a boar and 2 sows) and the sows might be bred. so its a bit of a waiting game round here! hahaha.

enjoy (:

 
David Livingston
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http://www.heifer.org/media-standalone/world-ark/archives/2012/august/rodents-of-unusual-size

I noticed above a comment about traditional guinea pig production in the Cameroon . Since the Cameroon is in West Africa And the GP comes from south America I thought there might have been some mistake. GPs dont seem the correct shape for swimming that far. Its more likley to the animal described in the link I have given
I am very interested And impressed by your efforts although how I could buy some here in France I dont know

David
 
kadence blevins
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very interesting article david. they arent guinea pigs but are one of the many cousins of them.

there are guinea pigs being raised as meat animals in cameroon. they are likely to have been brought by traveling peoples to sell as exotic pets to rich people. i'm thinking that isnt too unlikely and when the rich people got bored with them i know if i was working for that person and was told to dispose of it, i would take them home! hahaha. i'm sure people of the time began seeing how easy they were to keep and feed.

you could start raising guinea pigs for meat in france. i've read of people all over the world doing it. and actually you are more likely able to be able to locate someone with the large production bred "cuy". i had found a couple websites of people in germany (lost the link, darn it) who had imported some of the big meaty ones from the mexico and south america meat production places.

best of luck (:
 
kadence blevins
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i did it (: i ate one. uploading and putting together the video. will post link to it when its ready. video is of live to tasting it.
 
K. Johnson
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Wow Kadence you've got this whole little forum kingdom thing going here. I have bee thinking about rabbits and guineas as food. I do like rabbit. Why not do whatever is necessary to get the meat off the bone - boil/poach/roast whatever, then roast the bones and simmer to make stock. Add bay leaf, celery and onion (not too many flavors) and maybe a splash of olive oil. If the meat is good the stuck should be nice too. And nutritious. Use it to make cormeal topping for Shepherd's pie. Yum.

Question: If small livestock (including little pigs)is fed fancy feed, like nuts and grains and maybe nice herbs, will the flavor of the meat be better? What's the conventional wisdom versus reality?

Kathy J
 
Jason Guerard
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How does the taste compare to rabbit?
 
kadence blevins
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K. Johnson wrote:Wow Kadence you've got this whole little forum kingdom thing going here. I have bee thinking about rabbits and guineas as food. I do like rabbit. Why not do whatever is necessary to get the meat off the bone - boil/poach/roast whatever, then roast the bones and simmer to make stock. Add bay leaf, celery and onion (not too many flavors) and maybe a splash of olive oil. If the meat is good the stuck should be nice too. And nutritious. Use it to make cormeal topping for Shepherd's pie. Yum.

Question: If small livestock (including little pigs)is fed fancy feed, like nuts and grains and maybe nice herbs, will the flavor of the meat be better? What's the conventional wisdom versus reality?

Kathy J


hahahahaha forum kingdom? just from my posts on this forum? I wonder what you would say about all the other forums i'm on! hahaha let alone how many posts I make on all of those forums as well!

yes I've been thinkin of other ways to cook it. thinking because it was so tender that BBQ/grill seems the best. at least for my tastes.

as far as feeding and flavor differences, I cant really say. I know some of the Spanish sites I've managed to find the time to translate a bit says grain/pellet fed vs forage fed is a big difference. the grain fed is more yellowy meat and fat(same as chicken and rabbit meat). in south America and all though unless you are of the people who raise *huge* scale then you don't feed grain/pellet you feed forage and maybe some mineral stuff. in many of the videos of the large south American setups you see bowls of powdery stuff that I read was mineral supplement. {{by the way I use mineral spool things like for rabbits, they are cheap}}
I know with rabbit a lot of people say the forage/grain based diet rabbit tastes better then the pellet fed diet rabbit. although that also gets varying answers based on each persons taste.

Jason Guerard wrote:How does the taste compare to rabbit?


it tasted a lot like rabbit, just a bit differently. mostly the texture was different. like there is chicken, which you can shred with a fork... and rabbit isn't quite the same but still shreds some just not the same and more falls apart when you cut it then chicken does.... well guinea pig is similar to rabbit except it falls apart more like canned tuna fish. at least the way I cooked it, which was in crockpot. next time i'll definitely be pulling the meat off the bones and BBQing it. the meat doesn't really have its own flavor. like rabbit meat but more bland I suppose.
 
kadence blevins
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I GOTS BABIES (:
silver sow, lil black sow, one of himi sows had babies. two REW flat fur sows, one REW messy hair sow, one REW messy hair boar, one flat fur brown mousy agouti sow, one grey/brown mousy agouti sow, one black/red tri boar (pretty sure is lil black sow's baby).

bad news is the cute lil himi sow that escaped while I was visiting my fiancé is gone... no sign of her... ): too much around here that would eat her and I have no hope of finding any signs of her, let alone her alive. although it would be super great if one day I came across a white GP in the yard and it was her. though I am seriously seriously seriously doubting it would happen.

workin on getting the video uploaded of the babies.
 
kadence blevins
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update video of the babies! (:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5uPJ9cEK2Do
 
David Livingston
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Thought you might like this
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-22812158

David
 
Tokunbo Popoola
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how much time did it take to get them ready? I was thinking of a kinda cuy/pig tractor system? with adding aged hay.
 
kadence blevins
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David Livingston wrote:Thought you might like this
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-22812158

David


thank you that was interesting. I hadn't come acrossed it yet (:
 
kadence blevins
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Tokunbo Popoola wrote:how much time did it take to get them ready? I was thinking of a kinda cuy/pig tractor system? with adding aged hay.



get them ready for what exactly? haha you mean butchering or grow out time or...?

I would like to try a tractor system but with how things are right now and the way the land here is I cant do one. though I have many ideas for ones.
not sure what you mean about adding aged hay. mine get hay and cut forage constantly. whatever they don't eat gets used as bedding which then goes into a compost pile or onto plant areas.
 
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