I had been telling Inaki about my big pig. And as I introduced him to all the animals he was interested to meet this well loved Big Pig.
– Is that the Big Pig? said Inaka looking at Manu my one year old Hereford boar. I told him that no that was not the big pig, though it was A big pig. Manu jumped up and rested his front legs on the gate showing off his muscly shoulders.
Next he saw Poppy. The Hereford sow.
– Oh. He says. That must be the big pig.
– No, I said, That is a bigger pig but not THE big pig. Poppy turned and stormed off in a huff.
Then we walked across to Sheila’s sunroom.
– Oh, he said. Then there was silence. That is a Big Pig.
Sheila grunted. Yes, she said without raising her head. I am THE BIG PIG. Now hush. I was sleeping – and will be sleeping again soon. Less noise please.
Now that the turkeys are in a pen we have discovered that they are laying eggs. There are only two hens so these are not fertile but I hear they are great in cakes. The cadet crawled into their covered area to collect them so she got to take them home.
The peahens have discovered the wild bird food. It is not as if they do not have plenty of feed elsewhere.
We have twenty new layers now. Little Rhode Island chicks. They are tucked up in the brooder box in the Cloak Room for a week or so and once the last of the cold weather is gone they will migrate to the Turkey House that Fede built last summer. And this weekend is the Famous Bantam Swap and I intend to buy some fertile eggs there as well so we can introduce some new genes into the flock – these will go into the incubator.
It was pretty stormy here last night. Lots of rain and wind and thunder and lightening. A good night to be a cow sleeping in a deep bed of straw in a dry cozy barn. Or me in my bed. Today we have more rain – in between showers Inaki and I will be out planting raspberries, blackberries and wild pear trees and crab apple trees. The best time to plant a tree is today.
I hope you have a lovely day.
Pigs are revered in Pais Vasco and Spain. Ham is almost a sacred food. I’m sure those turkey eggs would be equally good fried or scrambled, but I imagine they are quite rich and therefore perfect for cakes 🙂
Manu and Poppy have their snouts out of joint, but Sheila knows very well she is *The* Big Pig, lovely girl. I bet she was grinning silently into her bed as she told you both to hush 🙂
Mad is not to mention Ham, Bacon or Pork in her hearing, please, she is above such things. She is the Farmy Totem Animal, the spirit of all that is good about Farmy life.
Do let us know what the turkey eggs are like, I have never eaten any. How many chickens do you have?
Big chickens about 25 or 30 I think – and 20 little layer chicks.. c
I’m so glad Sheila is untouchable. Once you name them they’re people. 🙂
Oh yes, Sheila will never be sold – she is my pet. c
-grin- she’s pretty amazing.
Better the wild bird food than Our Johns tomatoes and brassica’s. Sheila is a roomful of pig in that picture 🙂 Laura
I love Spring on the farmy! I can’t wait to see what else you bring home from the swap. More pea fowl? Another Boo Boo? Get something good! And welcome back to the Cadet. I have missed her!
Me too! When I hear it’s time for the Famous Bantam Swap I start conjuring up all sorts of new animals for the farmy! Very exciting!!! 🙂
I have my wish list of what I’d like Celi to get. Is this Llama year?
Llama year – I don’t know – but one year I saw HUGE turtles – do you remember? I still kick myself for not bringing one home. c
They are high maintenance in the winter, though.
I love your pigs! We use our guinea, duck, and goose eggs to make homemade noodles – they are firmer than chicken eggs. We have never had turkeys last long enough for laying (freezer meat), so I am interested to know if they are more like the duck or like the chicken please share?! thank you for another great article!
Yes, hopefully they will lay a few more and we can experiment.. c
Snorts – Sheila is all woman. She is not big. That is just extra loving 🙂 XOXO – Bacon
I know you know this but… you mention moving the chicks to the turkey house. I take it you’ve kept turkeys there? You are washing it real well with lye? Chickens and turkeys really shouldn’t share.
I bet Inaki had no idea that pigs could be so different from each other – like people, I suppose. Have a lovely time at the Swap – perhaps a few bunnies may find their way into the flerd?
No bunnies – no. In fact I have nothing on my shopping list for the Swap this year – which may be a dangerous thing! c
That Cadet, crawling to retrieve eggs and then taking them home. That’s the best part of today’s story.
Every time I see or hear “big pig” I immediately think of the luau scene in The Lion King with Pumba and Timone. Oldest kid was a huge fan of that movie. Have you had Rhode Island Reds before? If so do you find them to be a rather militant chicken? Any we ever had were rather dominating of the other chickens, in some cases really mean to the smaller ones. Of course I’m not sure they were pure Rhode Island Reds but they sure looked like it. Noticed yesterday when I read the post that Aunty Del is maturing very nicely, nice top line on that heifer.
I hope Aunty is pregnant – not due until July if she is, so there will be no signs for a while. As well as being beautiful (and unrelated to Daisy) she has a lovely calm disposition. She will be a great milk cow I think. I have had wuite a few flocks of Rhode Islands before, they will lay straight through our winters, but you are right – they can be a bit feisty if you try to move them off the nest!.. c
I think Aunty Del is pregnant. Her shape is shifting into that rounded, deep belly of a pregnant cow. It could be a hay/grass belly, but I think she looks like she is expecting. Yes there is no reaching under a Rhode Island Red hen for eggs, unless of course you like having your hand pierced. I’m so not a fan of that, had too many bad experiences with pecky hens as a child. I always encouraged them to leave the nest to gather their eggs. I do love their color and their hardiness though, I just don’t think I would ever buy any again. Of course the last ones were freebies so can’t complain too much.
I never knew what a pea-hen looked like before. They’re quite lovely. They rhythm of your story of the search for the big hen sounded like a children’s story. Delightful!
Welcome Inaki! You will love Sheila…the big pig! 🙂
We all love the BIG PIG Sheila! Have a lovely day today planting trees!
The Three Pigs! I’ll bet Sheila blew Inaka’s house down!!
Ooh turkey eggs..don’t think I have ever tried one so am curious to know how they “behave” when cooked!
I wish we had swaps like you do there! I would love to attend them.
Good to go to the swap with a clear mind . . . . AND you just have to bring back something new to the farmy: llamas and turtles would be huge fun for us [you notice the selfish undertone 🙂 ? ] But isn’t it time for Ton, who is not getting and younger, and Boo to have a little brother to train . . . .still remember Old Dog . . . there were three of them then and with all those baby cows to be born . . . ? . . . and the time it takes for a puppy to become sensible . . . ?
Since I started seeing your pictures of pigs..quite a long time ago now….I have not been able to eat bacon….see what you’ve done:)
Oh no. I ruined bacon for you! Ooops so sorry.
A big happy much loved pig!