I have about 1.5 acres of wooded area with a seasonal creek running through the middle. It's largely populated with honeylocust and Osage orange (hedge apple) and I'm wondering if anyone has kept pigs under honey locusts trees and if so, were there any problems the hogs had with the thorns that were on the ground. Damage to the trotters or snouts?
I am unsure how big these thorns are but in New Zealand wild pigs live in the gorse and blackberries. Gorse is grown as a fence in the UK and is an almost impenetrable barrier but pigs don’t even slow down.
Drew, the thorns on a blackberry are cute and cuddly compared to those on a honey locust.
I have housed pigs in a shed, outside of which were a number of honey locust, some with some wicked thorns. The pigs had plenty of room to roam, but spent lots of time moving around the trees since that's where home was. Never had any problems, though I did try to make a point of keeping the dead twigs and branches picked up and out of the way.
I would suggest making a point to not feed them too near the trees. There's always a bit of jostling for position while eating (even with plenty of trough space), and someone could rather easily get pushed into some nasty stuff. Even so, pigs have tough skin (they were made for rough areas, and could hold their own in the worst crime-ridden back alley), so they're well defended to start with.
I seem to recall that the honey locust thorns will go through a horses hoof. I want some honey locust with thorns, but I always knew that I have to pick special spots for them where they won't end up in my animals or tires. I had read that the thorns were used as nails to build structures before metal nails were plentiful.
My Food Forest - Mile elevation. Zone 6a. Southern Idaho <--I moved in year two...unfinished...probably has cattle on it.
They are impressive thorns. Still pigs aren’t stupid, are super tough and can heal from some pretty knarly wounds with no assistance. We’ve found numerous bullets that weren’t ours in wild pigs and you usually couldn’t tell from the outside. I’d see how it goes.
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