Our three sows are as big as our barn. Today is 114 days since we witnessed the first signs of love in the pig pen, so we could have piglets at any moment now... but when?
We brought Apollo home the first of May, and all three ladies were bred almost immediately within the first week or two. For us newbs, we had no idea how to know if they were indeed pregnant except that they did not show signs of estrus again. As the months passed, we've noticed small changes, but nothing like the changes we're witnessing now.
Their bellies are hanging low, and their teats are large and full. Their back ends are swollen and floppy and extremely birthy. But pigs are not the lovable creatures that goats are. Sure, they'll let you scratch their muddy backs, but it's just not the same. And truthfully, as all of our farmer friends say, we want to let them be pigs, build their nests and birth their young as nature intended. We are trusting that the ladies are natural mothers and will be able to care for their babies as needed, not have their babies in a mud puddle, not crush them, and feed them appropriately. If there is an emergency, we will certainly step in, but we are trusting that we will walk out to feed one day, see a girl missing, and go find her in the forest, bedded down in her nest, surrounded by her precious litter of piglets.
Until then, we'll be waiting with our iPhones in hand to catch the first moments. Send good birthing vibes our way. Love, Karyn