• Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Houdini Pigs (Fencing Troublesome pigs)

 
Matthew Connors
Posts: 46
Location: Acworth, New Hampshire
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I have 6 Guinea Hogs. They are kept on a mix of pasture/orchard/forest. Their typical paddock size is 1/4 to 1/2 acre, rotating every two or three weeks. They receive kitchen/produce scraps from our local food coop, about 7 gallons a day. Some grain for training (mostly to lure them back in)

The fence is two strands of electric surrounded by kencove pig netting. The charger is a Parmak 12v 30 mile 3 joules.

They used to stay in, but lately the have been escaping everyday. It started with 1, then she taught 3 more to follow her. At dawn and dusk. I can't figure out why. I have tried more feed, tons of apple drops, giving them new giant paddocks. Nothing works! They seam to escape just to spite me.

Any ideas?
 
Jami McBride
gardener
Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
25
books chicken duck food preservation forest garden hugelkultur trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hello -

I have used a 3 joule on 1 electric net 167 feet long, and if you keep the grounding rod area damp it works. But you sound like your running more line than one net.
I would bet your energizer is over tasked by the netting and lines, plus your grounding set up may not be doing all it needs to to cover 1/2 ac. I'd buy the $75+ fault finder/tester. This will tell you if your 3-J is working at full potential. Next purchase a larger energizer.

The experts say to first check and beef up the grounding system.
Next, check the line for shorts and ground-outs caused by to much grass, twigs or other things like T-post drawing your juice away. This is where a good fault finder earns its keep. Some issues can't be found with eyes alone.

If you have a good grounding system and clean, unbroken lines then you just need more juice by way of a larger energizer - say 6-8 joules.

 
Matthew Connors
Posts: 46
Location: Acworth, New Hampshire
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
A couple of additions to my original post as I cannot seam to edit...

I keep the line weed free, near 100%, and my wimpy fence tester lights up (barely) the 4-4500 volt light. The fence pops the snot out of me.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3646
Location: Vermont, off grid for 22 years!
78
bee chicken fungi solar trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Is there something in particular they are going after? I had to put my sow in the freezer a few months earlier because she was so desperate to join my cows she bent the gate in 2 places and busted out after several months trying.
 
Matthew Connors
Posts: 46
Location: Acworth, New Hampshire
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Cj Verde wrote:Is there something in particular they are going after? I had to put my sow in the freezer a few months earlier because she was so desperate to join my cows she bent the gate in 2 places and busted out after several months trying.

I wish I could discern this. But they just seem to want to roam. There is nothing outside of their paddocks that is not inside of it as well. Boredom?
 
Jami McBride
gardener
Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
25
books chicken duck food preservation forest garden hugelkultur trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Just some thoughts . . . .

How high off the ground is the lowest hot wire? If pigs can put the hot line on the bridge of their nose where their hair starts they can slide under with diminished discomfort. Have you been able to watch them escape? Are there low spots in the land that the pigs are taking advantage of?

You want a reading of 7000 if at all possible, and a shock for you or I may not feel the same on muddy noses or hairy backs.

I have pigs that will take a shock to escape, so extremely tight lines, with lots of posts and higher than minimum shock is needed. Most do not require such measures, but I've learned that if they learn bad escape habits as piglets then they will require much tighter fencing all their lives. So I trained piglets with one hot line from the beginning.



 
Matthew Connors
Posts: 46
Location: Acworth, New Hampshire
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Jami McBride wrote: .

How high off the ground is the lowest hot wire?
- as low as possible without touching weeds +- 3 inches, second line at eye level.

Have you been able to watch them escape?
- yes, they slide right under. They don't get a zap, or very little. I think they are insulated by their hair. (guinea hogs are quite hairy) I put my hair on it and I don't get shocked.

Are there low spots in the land that the pigs are taking advantage of?
- no, I put enough posts in to account for every contour change to keep the fence less than 5 inches from the ground everywhere.




 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3646
Location: Vermont, off grid for 22 years!
78
bee chicken fungi solar trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
When is the slaughter date?
 
Matthew Connors
Posts: 46
Location: Acworth, New Hampshire
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
2 of them will be slaughtered in late October / early November. 4 overwinter.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3646
Location: Vermont, off grid for 22 years!
78
bee chicken fungi solar trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Well, just to state the obvious, don't breed these!

Keep feeding them and calling them back. Mine always seem to escape in the fall and again in the winter when the electric stops working due to snow. I always worry that they'll go feral but I hear it's a little too cold for that in NH/VT.

I do have a secure pig area made of hog panels for emergency but I had Miss Piggy in there a little too long and she busted the gate.
 
Jami McBride
gardener
Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
25
books chicken duck food preservation forest garden hugelkultur trees
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thanks for your replies -

Okay two things you can do are:
(1) make a small paddock from cattle panels - 8 work well. And then run hot wire on the inside at about 4" off the ground. This is where I put my Houdini(s) before they can teach others to defy the fencing. It's a pain but it works great until slaughter. Also can double later as a nursery for raising up piglets with mom.

I find that when I have the pigs close to other animal paddocks so they can see others getting food, water or attention that's when the escaping by certain pigs happens, or when they can see us coming out of the house. When I have them way off in the woods, same exact fencing, with no line of sight to anyone else, no escapes happen. The pull just isn't there.

(2) Trap bad pigs in a narrow squeeze between two cattle panels and shave a stripe from the top of the nose to the shoulder area (I use electric razor). This makes your hot line have impact on their choices. I can actually rub my tame pigs, Kunekune and American Guinea Hog mixes (very hairy), into letting me shave them thus without to much fuss, but we tame all our pigs from birth and I know this is not practical for everyone's situation.
 
Matthew Connors
Posts: 46
Location: Acworth, New Hampshire
2
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Last ditch effort-
-shaved pigs, stripe from snout to tail
-4 grounding rods
-hot line guitar string tight, 6 inches off the ground
- put them in a matrix of hot line

FAIL

They are now behind hog panels where they shall stay. Poor piggies. But safe piggies.

 
Jami McBride
gardener
Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
25
books chicken duck food preservation forest garden hugelkultur trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Haha funny photo Matthew.....

Boy, your pigs are houdini pigs! I'm so sorry your having all of this trouble, but at least they are secure now.
Maybe next time a 6 joule *grin*
 
I agree. Here's the link: https://richsoil.com/wood-heat.jsp
  • Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic