Monday, April 11, 2016

How to Measure the Weight of a Pig

Our three piglets are getting pretty big. The fallen and excess fruit is beginning to diminish. This means that it is time to plan turning pig into pork.
The ideal weight is about 70kg for a porker. This would mean over 200kg of pig and that translates to a whole lot of pork. So measuring them is important to be able to work out when they have their one bad day.
I imagine that there may be scales that could be used and also that experienced pig growers can tell just by looking but I rely on a length of plastic tape. This is used to measure the girth (the width of the pig measured behind their front legs). A table on the reverse of the tape then converts the girth into estimated weight.
The pigs are very friendly and curious and will come right up to me if I enter their pen. These three are still a little wary and haven't yet taken to nibbling my trousers. So to distract them I pour some food into their trough and quickly pass the tape under their belly. When I pull it up to mark their girth they move away quickly but I have enough time to take a measurement of 85cm. When all three pigs come out with a similar girth I know I must be close. Using the table this translates to between 52 and 55kg. Not quite big enough but with enough food put in front of them they should be close to 70 in about three weeks.
We will have to clear some more space in the freezers!

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