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Looking to buy American Guinea Hogs in CO and rotational grazing fence options

 
Kimmi Woodmansee
Posts: 7
Location: Loveland, CO - zone 5
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I am looking for someone selling a breeding pair of Guinea hogs in or around CO. I live in Northern Colorado in Loveland. I have looked at the AGH web site for registered breeders and have had no luck finding a breeding pair. Anyone know anyone selling AGHs?

Second I was looking to raise the AGH pair with a Nigerian Dwarf goat and a Alpine goat on a single acre pasture. I have water from a well and perimeter fencing of no climb horse fence but was wondering what the best fence option was for the rotational Paddocks. I was looking at eclectic netting from Premier 1. Anyone have any experience with them? which netting configuration did you use. Should I get the poutry netting with smaller holes or the goat netting with closer spaced posts and bigger holes. Or would T posts with different height Electric lines be better? There are a ton of options.
 
Jami McBride
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Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
25
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We have breeders here in Oregon, but I don't know about CO.
I run AGH and KuneKune breeds through rotational grazing.

As for fencing, I was just like you a few years ago and had to use trial and error, here's what I have figured out.

Farrowing Paddocks - you'll want the smaller netting 3" or 3.5" size openings at the bottom -OR- set up 2x4" woven wire fencing with one strand of electric twine/rope/wire running inside the metal fencing, about 4-6" off the ground. I prefer the netting as it is cheaper and larger than the 100' woven wire I can buy in my area, but I use both. If you buy the netting you will want to buy extra step in posts for making adjustments in your netting between the posts of the net. I've found that if the piglets first 'fence' experiences involve them breaking out, they are always testing your fences from then on. I've had several litters over 3 years now, and the difference between well trained piglets and those that have started off with bad habits is night and day. So get your nursery fencing right and you'll be off to a great start! You could use several lines of twine, 3-4" apart to make your own piglet enclosure, but I like the safety from predators the nets provide until the piglets have grown a bit.

For one net I use 1 or 1.5 joule energizers, you wont need much in the way of shock and it's nice to have light duty energizers for small enclosures. Even two nets combined won't need anything bigger. You want to look at 'output joules' and not feet/miles covered. Ratings for energizers can be deceptive, with output joules you know what your getting.

Because I'm still moving the animals in areas without semi-permanent fencing I use plastic tubs to keep the energizer, a power strip and extension cords in. I run a power cord to the strip inside the tub and plug the energizer into the power strip. In the winter, if I feel the pigs need a light for extra heat in their movable house I can run a short power cord from the strip in the tub out to a light in their house. The tub keeps the energizer dry and protected. I cut two notches near one end of the tub, one on the right and one on the left - cutting through the top rim, about 1" down. I use the notches for cords, energizer green goes out the left notch to the grounding rod; and the energizer red goes out the right notch to the netting. When the lid snaps on, the notches are under the lip of the lid and safe from water entry. The pigs house, energizer tub and netting are all easily moved. And I can store the energizes and their tubs in the garage until needed. I even keep extra rope and home-made mite spray in my tubs. One day I may switch to a central, powerful energizer system, but this works so great I'm in no hurry.

Once weaned (18 to 24 months) you can move the piglets (not mom) and the netting to a new fresh area. Mom goes back in with the sows, or boars for re-breeding. And piglets can be sold from here or left for a couple more months to put on weight and grow bigger for the adult pig areas.

Pig Paddocks - I use two strands of white twine, and run my lines using T-posts and trees, I use step-ins to make adjustments where needed.

We are getting a dairy cow soon and I will be making semi-permanent paddocks that can then be section off using the electric twine. There are negatives to electric nets - they stretch over time, sag at the bottom and the ground line can pop out of the posts. So I use mine on my flatter ground near the house for temp housing set ups or for piglets. It just works out much better to use twine/wire to cover larger areas.



I've only used Kencove.com for supplies so far - but you have to ask to make sure what your ordering is in stock and will ship out or it can take weeks for your order to arrive (and they don't necessarily tell you if something is out of stock). Also, you'll want to check your order when it arrives and count everything. I've come up short on step-ins, and had one reel sent broken. They are very nice and helpful, but you have to stay on top of things. The ship out replacements but it still takes a week to get them for me, I'm on the west coast.

Right now Kencove has 660 feet of twine on a reel for $20 - these mini reels are great for sectioning off areas.



New pigs 029.JPG
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Half AGH & half KK
12-10-2014-piglets 034.JPG
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Growing Fast
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Full grown parents waiting to graze
 
Kimmi Woodmansee
Posts: 7
Location: Loveland, CO - zone 5
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That's awesome info thanks! Do you pasture your pigs with any other animals? How big are your paddocks? How many pigs do you run in each paddock and for how long?
 
Jami McBride
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Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
25
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Kimmi Woodmansee wrote:That's awesome info thanks! Do you pasture your pigs with any other animals? How big are your paddocks? How many pigs do you run in each paddock and for how long?


Yes, I've run the pigs with chickens, sheep and alpaca.

Paddock size depends on the location, because I have things like ponds, forest, and steep slopes. So I make the paddocks to fit the area. In the winter I have one paddock that is encircled by 800 ft of line and another twice that size giving the pigs room to roam while the land is wet. In the summer if their area is still nice, instead of moving I'll let the pigs out for 45 minutes to free graze twice a day. I let different ones out at different times to prevent accidental breeding. They help keep the grasses along the driveway, pond and out buildings mowed for me. They could leave my property but they don't, and they don't poooo on my road (I really appreciate that) I only wish my ducks were as thoughtful.

The number of pigs, and their ages/sizes also varies - and my plans for them vary, some are for the freezer, some are for breeding stock, etc. My goals, their size and sex determine how many are in a particular paddock. They stay until all the grasses are mowed, and then it's time to move.

I currently have 15 pigs of various ages.

 
Amos Burkey
Posts: 101
Location: Nebraska
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Kimmi Woodmansee wrote:I am looking for someone selling a breeding pair of Guinea hogs in or around CO. I live in Northern Colorado in Loveland. I have looked at the AGH web site for registered breeders and have had no luck finding a breeding pair. Anyone know anyone selling AGHs?

Second I was looking to raise the AGH pair with a Nigerian Dwarf goat and a Alpine goat on a single acre pasture. I have water from a well and perimeter fencing of no climb horse fence but was wondering what the best fence option was for the rotational Paddocks. I was looking at eclectic netting from Premier 1. Anyone have any experience with them? which netting configuration did you use. Should I get the poutry netting with smaller holes or the goat netting with closer spaced posts and bigger holes. Or would T posts with different height Electric lines be better? There are a ton of options.


I may have a breeding pair for you. I sent you a message with contact info.
 
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