Last Saturday the last of my lovely Saddleback weaners left the farm. I had 14 remaining – 4 gilts and 10 boars. The family who bought them travelled across to pick up the weaners and arrived mid afternoon.
I spent the morning with the weaners checking their ear tags, seeing which ones could be registered with the British Pig Association and giving them rubs on their tummies.
Some of them did not like to have their ears checked, I think probably because they still have a memory of when the tag was put in and I don’t think I would want anyone touching my ears after that either. Anyway checking the ear tags numbers for some of them meant laying down in the straw next to the weaners and then slowly and carefully checking the number. I would always hope at that point that the tag was clean and no dirt was obscuring the numbers, but usually no such luck!
I also let the weaners spend quite alot of the morning playing and free ranging around the fold yard which half of them loved but the other half were still too nervous to leave the shelter of the barn, which was going to be a problem when it came time to loading them!
When Pippa And David arrived with their two children, the weaners were all asleep.
I wouldn’t say that catching them and carrying the weaners into the trailer was fun. Eight to nine week old weaners are heavy and it is not easy picking them up and then carrying them to the vehicle.
I was sad to see the weaners go although I know that they will be well looked after and that Pippa and David’s children will give them lots of fuss and attention. Although I try not to have favourite pigs, if they are given a name it’s hard not to miss them alittle more than the nameless ones.
Tiny was handreared from week one and has been a success story in managing to survive, so she will be missed.
Patch will also be remembered and missed greatly as he was not only a character in personality but also in that he had a patch of pink covering half of his face.
I look forward to hearing news of the 14 saddleback weaners.