Posts have been a bit light over the past few weeks. Mark had hip surgery and I’ve been filling in on all fronts while he’s been recovering. This means taking on care of the turkeys and pigs. Thank goodness we’ve figured out low management techniques for our livestock. Below is a breakout of the time for my new chores while Mark was healing up.
Pigs – 5 minutes a day – 20 minutes on Saturday
Before surgery Mark filled up the bulk feeder with about 200 pounds of feed. Given how small the pigs are at this stage that will last for weeks. Every night I had to go out and close the trap door on the feeder so that the raccoons won’t eat out of it all night. And then every morning open it up for them. I also gave them some treats of whole watermelons that I got free from Town and Country. They gobbled them up – rind and all!
They have a bulk waterer which is a 50 gallon drum. Refilling this about once every 10 days is simply running the hose out to it.
I did have to clean out their pen. OK, YUCK! They have peed in their pig house so I had to scrape out the wet straw. Then walk around to the spots they like to poop in with a big dog pooper-scooper and pick it up. But then, my favorite part that I always find deeply satisfying; laying down clean, bright straw.
Turkeys – 5 minutes a day
I had to fill up their grain feeder about every other day. That part was easy. Not so easy was their waterer. First part was to lug a 5 gallon paint bucket full of water up from the house hose bib. Folks, that’s about 41 pounds hanging off one hand. Then you have to put the top on it, invert it and then pick the whole thing up on to its stand. Even Mark doesn’t like this approach, so if we do turkeys again we’ll get a different bulk watering system.