How to tell if your pig is pregnant

Our pig is pregnant? Isn’t that exciting. Poppy the Hereford gilt (a gilt is a female pig who has not had piglets yet) wishes to announce (though she would prefer NOT to discuss her insides) that she has missed her first heat since being bred.  We have had such a long run of missed breedings, both bovine and porcine, that I am still hedging my bets and in fact my Mentor of all things Pig said she would NOT have bet on it. But the signs are there.  No returning heat and extreme laziness and gentleness. She has not bashed at the gate once! She is a very laid back pig all of a sudden.

So .. we may yet get piglets. YAY.  (a very little Yay not wanting to jinx it). Touch wood – Dance around three times on one leg in a westerly direction,  throw salt over my shoulder and all that.  What’s your favourite superstition to avert bad luck? – ok do that one!

Sorry there is no picture of Poppy making her announcement but things were busy, busy today.  No doubt she will be in front of Camera House today.

The incubator eggs have finished being turned and are safely shut into the Snug. Door shut – no visiting dogs. The table heater is on and in the brooder box warming and waiting. The eggs  are due to hatch on Monday (though as we know from the incident of the Accident chickens sometimes they hatch early). My International visitors are hoping that they hatch early!girls working

I am thoroughly enjoying having young people staying again.  The girls  worked hard all day. Happy to pitch in anywhere. Being from three different countries (Hong Kong, Korea and Japan) they all speak English to each other and are endlessly comparing words and foods from their homes.  And yes tomorrow they are cooking!

farm girls

They are fascinated by the animals.  And will drop anything they are doing to ride around to the West barn in the truck.  They love being on the back of the truck, even in yesterdays cold blustery weather. There am I all alone in the front sat in solitary splendour as two dogs and three girls ride  on the back.  And being a Mother I drive slowly, slowly, afraid that someone will fall off.  Mothers! No fun!

girls and dogs on truck

They are even a wee bit disappointed that today should be warmer and we will be Walking to the barn instead. But they will catch that magic too. There is a kind of magic here. I just let it happen. You can see the farm on the prairies moving across their faces like a bright cloud with a string.  Slowly, slowly the visitors drift upwards their tethers dropping like ropes from a hot air balloon.  Then they laugh. Working on a real farm is the most natural work in the world.  It is my favourite gift.

The sheep have finally been sold. It is sad to see off the three sheep and sad that I am no longer a sheep farmer. This  New Zealander loves sheep you see. But the end came. We had a lovely run and as you know when Mama the big sheep died the heart of my sheep enterprise died with her.  Sad but true.   And we really do not have the room for three big sheep pets. Life keeps renewing itself, just like our voices.  We have been in a wee slump for a while now but I have a feeling the farmy and I are climbing back up out of it.

Whitney that shot of the big rock is for you!

I hope you have a lovely day,

Your friend on the farm




60 Comments on “How to tell if your pig is pregnant

  1. Fingers still crossed here. Your visitors look so happy – I’m sure it’s the farmy magic in the air 😉

  2. What beautiful girls, and so happy. It Quite cheered me up to see their smiling faces after a miserable morning trying unsuccessfully to make the computer boot up. This is the old, corrupted laptop which is slower and grumpier than a tortoise with a broken leg, and from which Word has disappeared and the anti-virus is out of date. Quiet congratulations to Poppy – your news hardly surprised me, given the number of hints that have been flying around!
    Have a lovely Easter,
    ViV xox

  3. All the best to the expectant mother. Lucky visitors.
    I tweeted your post with a quote (for the first time).

  4. Those girls are in their element, out in the air, working and having fun. Sharing is what life is all about. Fingers still crossed as I whisper my delight at Poppy’s news. So we may have Easter chicks after all. How exciting. Happy Easter to one and all as you enjoy an international meal together today!

  5. What lovely smiley faces the three girls have. They all look like they are having a great time. Fantastic news about poppy. Touch wood is my anti jinx! So touching wood for poppy x

  6. Long may the extreme laziness and gentleness last. I am still shocked how quickly and how mean Charlotte turned once her piglets arrived. Your visitors certainly seem to be bathed in Farmy Magic. Lucky Girls. Laura

    • P.S Please give each of the sheepy noses a goodbye kiss from me if they haven’t already left. sigh. Laura

  7. We don’t often get to see faces here. How lovely the ladies are. What a grand adventure for them and us…and all mankind.

  8. Nice! I’m so happy for the farmy. And I’m crossing my fingers as I type this, (not an easy thing to do…lol). The girls look lovely and very happy and Boo is loving every minute, isn’t he, the big suck. I frequently have international students living with me for a semester, and, while they need to focus on their studies, they love the “Canadian” lifestyle, and are incredibly grateful when I take them to the wilds at the cabin, so I can see and understand how happy your three girls are right now! Wait till you have a lovely cooked meal prepared by them. That’s something I always love. 😀

  9. Boo and Ton look mesmerized by the new guests. More people to throw the stick! Silent cheering for Poppy. The girls looks like they are having a lot of fun. What a gift to them to them and to you, everyone wins. Have a wonderful, pfoductive day, C.

  10. Good morning, c! Exciting news about Poppy. This will bring lots of busy days this summer. xx


  11. It sounds like the farm is bustling. The girls look like they are having a great time and boo looks like he is the king of the castle.

  12. Shall we say Poppy is in an Interesting Condition, which hedges bets? She is in a state of hope and expectation, as are we all. I love the sunshiny happy faces of your girls! Did they come sensibly prepared, and did they bring their own gumboots, or does the Farmy have an endless supply? I can only imagine the joy of working outside in the fresh air and wide spaces after life at close quarters in a city.

  13. All sounds well on the farm,having the girls there must be a delite,want to hear all about the good meal that’s coming up ,cong. To poppy

  14. Way to go, Poppy! So glad to hear it and will also cross all my digits as i can. How exciting! And what lovely visitors.

  15. All I can say is “Yes”! Can’t wait to hear about the food these young women will prepare!

  16. Oh, great news about Poppy! And those helper girls ROCK! Isn’t it great to score workers with SMILES?? Have a fabulous weekend! 🙂

  17. My favorite “warding off” ritual is to knock on wood. Or to simply say, “Don’t jinx it”.
    There is something calming about working around animals. I also feel like I’ve really accomplished something when working outdoors.

  18. So exciting to hear about Poppy! I will do the dancing around 3 times in a westerly direction! I’ve never heard of such of thing, but it sounds like Big Fun to do!!! No doubt the Internationals Farmhands are having an experience of a lifetime!!! And ‘Hurray’ for warmer weather!!!! xo

  19. Quietly now…YAY Poppy Pig! Happy helpers having great fun and learning- you are teaching the farm life Miss C, exactly as it should be. I am curious. Is there any college or university within a reasonable distance to you that also has an agricultural program? Looking at these ladies made me think of how amazing a joint venture might be between the farmy and ag students who want to learn other than ‘modern’ farming methods.

  20. What a great day it will be. There is nothing like hard work on a farm to make one feel totally alive. Those young ladies will change the world with what they are learning from you. I believe it will be women who make the difference in the end. They look so happy and full of promise. Your photos make me want to be out of doors as well.

  21. I think not even I could shift that big rock by hand! Now, what I need, see, is a photo of you in your Whitney Brown Stone shirt by the big rock! You know, since you post so many selfies… But a girl can dream. More importantly, come on, Poppy! x

    • John brings me rocks for presents, the big loader at work puts them on his truck then he gets out his little tractor to move them, this one resisted all efforts and might just have to stay where it has landed.. I have so many rocks Whitney, i am sure you could build a magnificent haha using these rocks.. but when!? and How? and Why are you so far away! c

      • How funny, before he retire my John brought me rocks too, as well as old old pavers and of all things, marbles! I always appreciated the ones he brought even though we have a huge gravel esker running behind the house! Lots of rocks there.

  22. A very quiet congratulations! Yesterday was gorgeous and around 15C but today is cold again. I can’t wait to get out int the garden.

  23. No superstition I will just pray for Poppy..that will definitely work!
    As you can guess I am sorry to hear that the sheep have gone, such cute animals but as I have said I am no farmer lady…I am a pet gatherer…
    It is good to see that the girls are all enjoying their farmstay.. I know that they work hard, we have never been disappointed with the helpers we have had…but three girls cooking..are you bonkers! It will be fun but chaotic and messy

    love to all including the cooks

  24. I remember the baby piglets nursing on our farm in Germany. Good luck with Poppy, I’ll do the dance and knock on wood. Happy farming with all your visitors.

  25. Little (yay) for Poppy! Maybe she will be just the opposite of Charlotte when her piglets arrive if she has already taken on a mild, laid back character now! Oh, can’t wait for piglets! Yes, your girls look as if they’ve been sprinkled with magic Farmy dust! Wonderful! Please tell the Korean contingent that one of the Fellowship goes out every week for Korean lunch because we love it so much! We do try and prepare it at home but just not the same. There is always a big jar of Kim Chee in the refrigerator because we can’t eat rice without it! 🙂 Maybe she’ll make you some tomorrow!
    Happy Easter!

  26. I hate to be indelicate, but in Italy, for good luck, a man must touch his, mmmm, testicles. Not naked, just through his pants. My husband is often letting his fingers drift down, quickly and unnoticed, to bring about some good luck or other. I’ll ask him to do it for your piggy. The girls are darling. They look quite at home! I’d love to be there for the cooking. My mother used to have some lovely vietnamese students, and they would come over and cook us the most amazing dishes. Happy eating!!

  27. You do have a a cute farm crew. They will never forget this experience. You have changed the world. Easy peasy!
    Enjoying sun and mild weather today – hope your world is hoppy!
    (Oh, found a couple of blogs I was searching for about Twitter and social media – might be something of interest for you with these bloggers?)
    Chris’ quick guide and instructions:
    WriterChrisfisher’s links for Twitter TIps:
    Kristen Lamb’s “Social media a waste of time for writers? Think again” (She always has the scoop stuff)
    OK, I promise, that’s al the “helpful links” Easy to get overwhelmed, but saving for later is good?
    Bye, bye sheep – we’ll count you in our sleep! (turning the page)

  28. The girls look so happy with their big smiles, such a pleasure to see when I was reading your post this morning with my first coffee! It must be quite a change for them to be on the farm with it’s wide open spaces and freedom all around them. But we all know that the farmy has it’s own magic, and it’s working on the girls!
    Fingers crossed for Poppy.

  29. luky lovely girls, getting Boo kisses. Did they all know eah other before oming to the Farmy. { the 3rd letter of the alphabet key is not working on my laptop, it’s hard to write without it 🙂 } Good wishes and prayers for Poppy.

  30. Three beautiful helpers – you, and they are so lucky! Good strong likely lasses, I hope they make a huge difference for themselves and the farmy. Sorry to hear no more sheep. Maybe the goats will help.

  31. There certainly IS something about a farm that touches people’s hearts! Everyone who ever visited our farm found it very relaxing and left feeling refreshed. I’ve been in a bit of a ”slump’ too. I think the slant of the spring sun reminds me of the not-too-long-ago days of ‘maple sugaring’ on our farm and all the visitors, fun and food we all shared. But soon I’ll be able to get my hands into the rich soil of my gardens once again …. as soon as the rest of the snow melts. (I”ve got three packages of new dahlia tubers next to my back door… just waiting for the right day!)

  32. I remember when my second daughter brought a friend home from college. She was from China. We took Echo to a dairy farm and she was just thrilled. What a memorable experience you are giving these young women of rural America. I can’t think of a better teacher.

  33. What happy farmy pictures on Easter Sunday morning: well, it is here – sunny, but we have just lost our Summer Daylight and the longer night to sleep in just past won’t make up for the evening darkness! What a happy crew you are . . .thank the girls for allowing full photos – daresay Moms and Dads back in the East are glad of those smiles. And who knows how to court them? That four-legged charmer!!! Have a fabulous time and we’ll keep our fingers and toes crossed for a soft and sleepy Poppy . . .

  34. Pingback: Rural round-up | Homepaddock

  35. The girls do look like hard workers. Good to see them having fun, too. Love the shot in the back of the truck.

  36. Beginning and endings all in one day. Beginning of a long friendship hopefully for the girls and an ending to sheep farming. A beginning of Poppy’s motherhood (lifting my eyes to the skies with a little prayer is my good luck practice) and hopefully an ending of WINTER for you all.

  37. Thank goodness for the Easter long weekend so I can catch up on my blog friends’ lives! Quiet congrats on Poppy! The girls look so bubbly and happy to be doing farm work. And why not!! Onward and upward, Miss C and the farmy!!!

  38. What a pleasure to see those young happy faces & to know you have such bright help. And that Poppy is pregnant. My fingers & toes are all crossed.

  39. The joy of farming that you are giving to those girls is priceless! My eyes are filled with tears at the thought of someone else catching the farming bug and experiencing what we love. You are creating memories and life changing moments for young people. You are an inspiration.

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