Not pretty – but pretty interesting.
Of course the ducks are pretty. In fact the corridor paddock which is my central field feels more ‘farmy’ with the ducks in there.
Anyway this (below) is what I feel is interesting: the pigs are eating their sunflowers, stalk, leaves, flowers and all in a sort of order. (They chew on the stalks then leave the big ones on the ground as nurse trees before moving on). I thought they would knock them down, willy nilly, and waste most of it. But it is the opposite. They have been slowly and quite thoroughly clearing a site. Slowly creating a big clearing and widening the open space as they go.
I think this is because it is safer to eat out in the open space. Though they like the shaded jungle, which they are clear felling, so they are about as clever as humans at conserving and nurturing their environment, but they are eating the edges of it first.
When the hogs first went into this field I had to knock down big sunflowers and corn stalks so I could open the gate. As Mad pointed out yesterday all those sunflowers will contribute to some very tasty meat.
I hope you are having a nice weekend!
WEATHER: Cloudy, maybe a shower – maybe not. We got very little rain yesterday so one decent shower would be nice.
Saturday 50% Precip. / 0.12 in
Considerable cloudiness with occasional rain showers. Thunder possible. High 76F. Winds NNW at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 50%.
Saturday Night 20% Precip. / 0 in
Cloudy. Slight chance of a rain shower. Low around 65F. Winds NNW at 10 to 15 mph.
Just wondering when the ducks will begin laying. Is it at around six months, or much later?
Yes. I think they are about the same as chickens. I had September in my mind.
I always think of birds feeding on sunflower seeds. I had no idea pigs would enjoy them, as well.
Pigs love them-
The pigs seem to be rather economical feeders, then, unlike cows and horses, which will leave big clumps of less tasty stuff… If you were strip grazing them, you could almost follow right behind them sowing the next cycle into all that lovely turned and fertilised soil.
And that is another interesting thing- they are not rooting up the soil yet – though when they run out of greens they will
Yes, very thoughtful Pigs, aren’t they? Do I see three drakes, C? And, is it my imagination, or is that duck pond slowly getting bigger? They look like they’ve settled right in; )
I really don’t know about the drakes – though I have seen a few who are always on the watch for trouble . Different behaviors
I would have thought that the pigs would have preferred to eat ‘under cover’where they would be less vulnerable, but great they are being so tidy, helpful for you 🤗 I think that meat is going to be great because as well as eating fresh clean non GMO foods they are happy and not stressed. Happy weekend to you too. Laura
Certainly not stressed at all!!
What is a nurse tree?
I am not sure that is the correct term but it is the one I use. When a tree falls and is left where it falls it begins to develop an ecosystem around it. As it rots and collects dampness below it small organisms like mosses begin to flourish and from then other plants begin to grow. And the fallen tree will nurse her budding world for years and years. And is essential to the undergrowth of a forest. I am sure there is a better term but the idea of a fallen tree helping the forest floor regenerate is a lovely one.
I get it now. The circle of life. 😸
Exactly, C – and the idea behind Hugelkultur Beds: )
Good morning! I was out at 5:30 starting hoses to try to keep gardens, trees and shrubs alive. It was amazing how birds and butterflies were hitting the water and mist at that hour. It will be another hot day with inferno heat today. Your mud holes and green vegetation is soothing to me… I still think a mud bath could be darned relaxing and maybe a bit of fun! Have a happy weekend, C.
As long as you are happy to share your mud with ducks and pigs!! You are having a terribly hot summer and we are having a cool one so far.
They know when they are on to a good thing. I do hope that people see what you are doing and come knocking on your door for top quality pork.
It all looks so lush there – the UK and Spain have had the same temperatures for almost a month and both look brown and parched in comparison.
I hope so too – I think I need to try and chat with the chefs themselves – though I am not sure how
Maybe you could send them a picture of the pigs in paradise, mention the quality of the food and it’s ability to enhance the fat in the pig. The pictures will probably speak for themselves.
Yes! That is a good idea. I will
Does Wai-Wai get to join in on the sunflower feast, or is that just for the piggies who go to market? (as in ‘this little piggy went to market, this little piggy stayed home….’)
Wai is on a diet – which is not working – so no seeds for him – maybe as a treat
Pigs are not stupid. they know what they are doing, even if they are just doing it instinctively. People are typically surprised when I explain that plants, particularly trees, respond to their environment, such as growing out of shade to get more light. Like, why would they NOT do that?! They are not stupid.
And so all of us who listen to our instincts are not stupid.
Well . . . . people are . . . . special in that regard.
I have not been leaving many comments lately. But I love coming here, learning something new almost everyday and sharing in your love of the natural way of living. I do not want to say what is said by so many that come before and most say it better anyway. I had to read parts of this to my daughter today. The way the pigs are eating is profound. I am in love with your blog as it shares so many wonderful things. Thank you for always taking the time to keep us well educated. Hugs, Marlene
Marlene- darling girl- I came all the way to Portland to find you – and so did you to find me! I love how you love your life!
Evidence of real cycles here where the environment is valued and nurtured to operate at its premium… It never ceases to amaze me how it ranges from dormant winter to abundant summer.
Farmlands and animals look so ‘organic’. How on earth does one keep all the dirt out of the house?
I always take my boots off before entering the house. And wear gloves when I work. But some other people don’t!! So yes I clean the floors often !
Beautiful pictures Cecilia
so my question is….how does one tell a male duck from a female duck?
No idea really
Those pigs are a well organised eating machine..very clever and not leaving behind any rubbish…it woukd be wonderful if people copied their pattern. Ducks and their antics are always interesting..but .. My they have grown!
They have grown so fast!
Aren’t those hogs clever! Good to hear they are eating all that good tucker …