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Author Topic: Hog advice  (Read 6327 times)

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Online mike_belben

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Hog advice
« on: March 13, 2018, 11:22:40 AM »
Ive been offered quite a few free pigs by a guy i helped out, who is going under the knife and cant physically or financially keep them.   Ive helped halve a few hogs in my teens but never butchered.  We torched and scrubbed, but i have also seen the scalding drum method.  I do have a good ol boy backwoods old timer buddy who has raised hogs his whole life and says just skin em out like a deer.    For free i can afford to experiment right?  Any comments on this?  Is skinning gonna be some sort of crime?


As for butchering.. What are your thoughts?  Dice her up and into freezer, or season in fridge a few days?   With deer, the difference from season on the very same piece of backstrap is unbelievable in terms of softening as the muscle breaks down and gaminess fades away.  Is it the same with pigs?  These are mostly corn fed btw, not sure if it makes a difference.

I also have the option of curing in my homemade kiln, that is also a smokehouse of sorts.  I have debarked hickory, black cherry, white oak, red oak and maple on hand.  Comments?  I have never smoked or cured meat of any sort.  

City kid, first year of country livin.  All advice is welcome but i will preface that by saying its time sensitive, i have no money and cant pen or feed them.   Whatever comes home is getting shot in the trailer.  Junky old chest freezer going into the house today. 
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Online Magicman

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2018, 11:52:24 AM »
Personally I would handle it like a deer.  Smoking would be OK but without proper instructions I would be hesitant to actually cure.
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Online newoodguy78

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2018, 12:15:37 PM »
I've butchered quite a few pigs in the past. Skinning them will be fine and is usually what we did. Try to get the hide off as quick as possible, skinning a cold pig is absolutely terrible.
As far as aging we usually got them halved and hanging one day and cut them up and froze them the next. I'm a big fan of aging red meats but don't think it's as necessary with pork.
The exception is the sausage if you make any let that sit for a day or three the flavor always seemed to be more consistent that way. If you do let the sausage "age" just keep an eye on it because the blood will settle to the bottom and leads to off colored and poor smelling product that I never cared for.
The curing part of the smoking process is the tricky part. Morton makes some pretty good inexpensive cures that are readily available. The biggest problem I've had curing meats is having them come out insanely salty. It's definitely a learning curve. Your smoker setup should work fine. Best of luck and go for it.
Just wanted to add-we always did ours in the fall when the weather is cool. Not sure what your weather is but getting the carcasses cooled down could be an issue. Putting them on ice may want to be considered. I much prefer cutting the meat up after its chilled, just seems to be cleaner and easier.

Offline starmac

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2018, 12:24:56 PM »
We always scalded and scraped them, but there is nothing wrong with skinning them either. Pretty much everybody that hunts wild hogs skins them. Unless you have a slicer and saw bacon and pork chops are going to be tough to do, but we have been known to make whole hog sausage before too, especially if butchering more than one, we would save the hams and make sausage out of the rest on one of them. We liked our sausage though. We would usually mix our spices then fry a little to test it then add some more if needed and test again, until we got it to the point we wanted it.

You can also can it if you do not have enough freezer space.
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Offline elk42

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2018, 12:40:52 PM »
Mike I age all my meat wild or domestic some a few days others longer because of rigor mortis, check this out

Ageing and the Impact on Meat Quality - The Pig Site
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Online mike_belben

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2018, 12:55:23 PM »
Thanks for all the quick responses.. Big help as i am trying to get ready now and make the call to go pick two out.  


Spice and seasoning recommendations would help.  Wife has a pretty good stock on hand.  

Buddy says i can use his grinder but i dont have sauage casing or whatever.  Would i be best off grinding into a bowl, a ziplock or a wire strainer to let drain?  

I dont have a slicer.. Heck i dont know a bacon cut from shinola at this moment.  I will cross that bridge at youtube university when i get there.  

I have sawzalled the backbone before but it was a chore.. Any reason not to just slice meat of the skeleton like a deer and leave spine/pelvis together?


I should clarify, i dont have a smoker and didnt mean "cure" by the definition, which i just looked up.  What i have is a plywood shed for a kiln where i can vent the smoke into the chamber.  So there would be meat sitting on a wire rack with a chimney pipe of hot hickory gas blowing past it.  I could also move the rack to the other side for a lower temp, im not sure whats best.  I guess id be smoke aging.. Not smoke curing.  Is there a point to this or a waste of time?  

Pig selection.. Theres male and female, young and old.  What am i looking for?


And finally my biggest worry.. Disease.  How do i know this thing aint sick?  What am i looking to avoid?
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Online mike_belben

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2018, 01:15:34 PM »
Mike I age all my meat wild or domestic some a few days others longer because of rigor mortis, check this out

Ageing and the Impact on Meat Quality - The Pig Site
That was a really good link, thank you.  How do you age yours?
I would like to hang these pigs for a few days but have no place to do that other than outside or in the smoke shed.  Temp wise its gonna be 35ish by dark down to 23 tonight. Hi 40 tomorrow 60 next day.  Im not sure if they can be left out in those temps. 
If i hang in the smoke shed obviously the temp will go up, drying out will occur and im concerned about mice/bacteria either way.  Drap in plastic wrap to retain moisture?  Or is that a terrible idea?  I do have a tall left/right refrigerator thats empty but i dont think theres any way i can hang it in there.  Maybe an eyebolt drilled thru the top and hope i dont hit wires?
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Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2018, 01:31:40 PM »
   Another topic I know nothing about. I do wonder why you would scald/scrape the hide if you were not going to use the skin. I know the skin makes good pork rinds but what other benefit is there to leaving the skin on pork?

   I bought some fresh killed/butchered pork in Cameroon in west Africa and they were just butchering with an ax and a machete. The chunk I got had the skin on it it so I gave it to a by-stander who I thought was going to remove the skin. He just threw it on top of a hot BBQ grill to remove the hair and after that all the meat smelled like burned chicken feathers. The next time I bought some I took it home and removed the skin myself.

   I know locals who ate them where I grew up in N. Fla used to also scald and scrape a possum as they wanted the hide left on them to cook. Never got desperate enough to eat one so I don't know what difference it made.
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Offline starmac

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2018, 01:48:05 PM »
We are going back 40 years here, but the biggest reason we scalded and scraped them was because we would make cracklins with the skin and rendered the lard. iirc, we would leave the skin on the hams. I will say this, if you intend to scrape them, you need to have several knives and be good at touching up an edge on them.
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Online newoodguy78

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2018, 02:27:15 PM »
Depending on what you want for cuts would effect how you dismantle the carcass. Pork chops for example you split the back bone then cut perpendicular to the spine at your desired thickness. Below the chop towards the belly is your ribs. The other way to do it is just take out the "backstraps" that is now a boneless pork loin. All the rib meat can go into sausage. The bacon is on the outside of the ribs and runs from the front shoulder back to where the ribs end. That comes off in one slab. 
I'd be hesitant to hang the meat in your kiln to age the heat could present an issue I believe. With what you have for temps I'd be more inclined to hang them in the shade. If you don't split them the chest cavity can easily be filled with ice and it will drain as it melts.
Once I get home I'll try to dig up my sausage recipes.

Offline LeeB

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2018, 02:42:27 PM »
I'm for skinning. I never could see all the work involved in scraping one being worth it. Skinning a hog ain't like skinning a deer though. They don't turn loose of their hide easy. As for cure, I would go to your local butcher and buy some cure instead of the Morton stuff. Works better and not near about as much salt. Stuffing sausage will be a huge chore without a stuffer. The grinder you borrow may have one as an attachment. hog casings are best bought from a butcher too. I wouldn't even consider making my own from the intestines. Way too much work. Soak the casings well for a couple hours in water with a little vinegar. rinse at least once. My attempts at smoking bacon have not worked out well, but then I never had a proper smoke house either. One of these days I'll get around to building one.
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Offline starmac

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2018, 02:48:05 PM »
No need to buy casings unless you want to, we rarely used them, but we preferred pan sausage.
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Offline Mooseherder

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2018, 02:49:41 PM »
You can buy a Hank of hog casings off the internet.
I don't use casings anymore myself.  I make patties and cook that way.  When I make a batch of sausage I'll roll some into logs for freezing.  You can slice after thawing some later on as you need it.

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Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2018, 02:57:24 PM »
   We make bulk deer sausage and just grind it, season/mix it with the appropriate amount of ground pork, dip it out with an ice cream scoop to get consistent sized balls, put them in vacuum seal bags, flatten them out in the bag to make patties then seal. Do the same thing with burger only we just start with bigger meatballs to flatten into the finished size patty we want.

   Once frozen it is easy to break along the seams into the number of patties we want at the time we cook it.
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Online mike_belben

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2018, 04:10:05 PM »
Thanks for the comments guys.  Another buddy of mine who was interested took a ride over and looked at them, said it was all 400 lb boars with huge nuts and the meat will stink no matter what i do.  So i may just pass altogether, i dunno.  Im not wanting to put much effort into something ill toss for the coyotes after paying to freeze it all year. 
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2018, 04:57:59 PM »
Mountain oysters, choice cuts. hmm

Yea if they are old boars, I would pass, but they would be fine if you cut them and could keep them 30 days or so.
Even then if they are 400 pounds, they are well past their prime, there is a reason the buyers dock you for any that are over 210 pounds.
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Online mike_belben

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2018, 08:16:21 PM »
Yeah.  2 of my neighbors wanted in so i brought one over this afternoon, first time really having a look.  Theyre biiiiig mean old boars, swimmin in a knee deep pool of their own stew.  Nothing i want to eat. 
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #17 on: March 13, 2018, 08:48:11 PM »
If you like the smell of pig you would not mind the taste and smell of that old boar. It would be yuck. think_not
We butchered casterated males or young females that were bred. Dad always said they were the least likely to taste or smell like pig.
Now a old sow if fed up on oats for a month made really good sausage. digin1 digin1
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Offline coxy

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #18 on: March 13, 2018, 09:33:17 PM »
mike if there boars just skin them and grind them into sausage anything other than that bear or coyote bait trust me 

Offline coxy

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #19 on: March 13, 2018, 09:36:38 PM »
if you do do it DO NOT CUT THE pith BAG IF YOU DO CHUCK THE HOLE PIG 

Online mike_belben

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #20 on: March 14, 2018, 12:03:14 AM »
Nah im definitely gonna pass on these.  Too much else to work on from now til i die  right now. 
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Offline sandhills

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #21 on: March 14, 2018, 09:53:06 AM »
I think you made the right choice there personally.  For future reference everything said here is good advice as usual though, we just butchered 2 a week ago and ended up with chops, loin, and 140#s of sausage, it's worth the work/time!  I wouldn't take the time to mess with an old boar though.

Offline Bay Beagle

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #22 on: March 14, 2018, 12:07:35 PM »
I think you made the right decision too.  I buy 60+ lbs of pork loin trimmings from the butcher, and get a few bags of LEGGS OLD PLANTATION #10 sausage seasoning, few hands of casings - add a lil more red pepper, and couple beef bouillon cubes - and start stuff'n & let sit 25 hours before freezing.

 

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #23 on: March 14, 2018, 03:48:31 PM »
every thing looks good except for the miller lite can  steve_smiley :D :D

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #24 on: March 14, 2018, 05:11:14 PM »
I'm about out of sausage myself so this thread is giving me a nudge.

Last batch I did I didn't let it sit, went from the casing press right into the freezer which turned out to be a mistake. It didn't let the casing stiffen up. I also had too much fat.

Every time has been a learning experience, this will be my 4th attempt.

I make mostly Italian sausage although it has been a bit inconsistent as I'm playing with spices.

I don't think the leggs has enough flavor by it's self so I add Italian dry mix, black pepper, fennel seed to the leggs.

I get a couple hogs from the Amish in Tennessee. Not having electricity for refrigeration they kill them in the morning, process, then I pick it up that evening. Last batch I had them grind the sausage meat for me and they put too much fat in. I'm thinking it was about 160 lbs of sausage from 2 hogs.

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #25 on: March 14, 2018, 06:35:06 PM »
When I make sausage I try to stick to around 20% fat or a little under,usually add two pounds of fat to ten pounds of lean meat. That ratio seems to go over well with people I give it to 

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #26 on: March 14, 2018, 08:31:36 PM »
i always went 2 lbs less meat on the leggs seasoning and seemed to be stronger there breakfast seasoning is good at the 50lb mark 

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #27 on: March 14, 2018, 11:26:12 PM »
I've got a deal with a friend, he raises the pork and beef and I supply him with firewood 8) 8) 8)  I've got to pick up the latest pig from the processor Friday.  We had the hams, bacon and loins smoked and the rest turned into brats and polish sausage.  $293.00 is the total to haul, kill, process, smoke, and freeze this time.  Good deal for us 8) 8) 8) 
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Online mike_belben

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #28 on: March 15, 2018, 02:57:40 AM »
My neighbor took my trailer over to go get a few today.  Theyd busted the pen a while back and finished eating up the yard, so they started going down the road and the law showed up.  He was gonna have to start shooting them.  

Im prepared to hear that the slaughter bill is gonna be pretty painful and meat disappointing but we shall see.  Other neighbor says if you can shoot em while theyre calm over a bucket of feed and immediately gut the nuts off while still kicking, the meats fine.  It was just too much of a chore for me on a chance of unedible meat, i cant afford the time or materials to waste.  
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Offline starmac

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #29 on: March 15, 2018, 03:31:46 AM »
Dem nuts be some of the best eatin you will ever get.
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Offline olcowhand

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #30 on: March 15, 2018, 04:59:16 AM »
I'm with the majority here, Mike. Pass, or maybe take the two to a sale and use the money toward a fed hog (210- ~235 lbs). I've processed 350- 400 lbs Sows (female that has had a litter), taking best cuts and the rest into whole hog sausage. That worked alright, but I would never consider processing a boar that mature.
Best fed hogs for processing are "barrows" (castrated male) or "gilts" (un-bred females).
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Offline PA_Walnut

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #31 on: March 15, 2018, 06:03:30 AM »
OK, so I'm a visual kinda dude... Sunday had bacons on the smoker! (cooking chicken under it to receive the holy-grail drippings)  :o

Be sure to leave skin on if you want to make great bacon....easy to cure and smoke with a few critical steps in mind. Can send you some tips!

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #32 on: March 15, 2018, 08:33:56 AM »
the signs of getting older, or aging gracefully ........... in our Youth, we talked about women, wild adventures and wild nights ..... now were swapping recipes ~

for every 20 lbs of pork mixture - I use one package of LEGGS #10, 40 oz. water, 7 beef bouillon cubes & 8 tsp crushed red pepper - mix it all into the water, and let sit for a hour
coarse grind meat ...... mix the water mixture into the meat until it stiffins ..... regrind the meat with a smaller plate (3/16) - STUFF CASINGS OR 1 lb. MEAT PACKAGE - let sit 12+ hours, shrink wrap casings in food saver packages - then freeze

for hot Italian sausage - I use LEGGS #103 - and process the same way as above

always trying new ways

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #33 on: March 15, 2018, 09:21:14 AM »
Boars can go either way.  Some have strong odor, others don't. If he smells "musky" (not just pig smell), so will the meat.  (Last boar I had was only musky when kept separate.  Put him in with the ladies and he smelled a lot better.  ;D)

I'm good with young boars up to say 250 Lbs.  Bigger is more of a gamble.  Probably giving away as it's not worth it to take to auction.  Around here a person might get $30 for a big old boar on a good day.  Most of them go to Mexico as cheap protein along with the old Mutton from what I'm told.

Hogs I take to butcher are about $0.50/lb vac packed plus grinding or anything special like brats.  

For hanging, our butcher won't hang more than 7 days on pork and prefers less.  Doesn't help it as much as deer or beef.  

If you do butcher yourself, get the meat almost frozen before you grind and it will go a lot better.  Also, keeping any animal calm at butcher gives better meat IMHO.  ;)
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #34 on: March 15, 2018, 11:32:04 AM »
Not to get off track too far but we used to raise hogs, nothing big but would sell about 20 (that's what the trailer would hold) a week, anyway all dirt raised but when the market fell out we quit.  For some reason and I don't know why, but we kept the last boar, and kept it, and kept it, when dad finally sold it it (Tom) weighed 920+ 
#.  He was pretty gentle but would eat 5 gallons of corn a day  :o.  You could've made 2 meals out of the oysters and still had left overs  :D.  He's the reason why I can't stand sausage pizza anymore  ;D.
P.S. I still have recurring nightmares about raising pigs again.

Offline TKehl

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #35 on: March 15, 2018, 12:03:09 PM »
Sandhill, I hear you.  Dad used to have 100 sows on dirt.  We got back in a few years ago with 7 sows growing for custom butcher.  But, we are getting out for now as there are too many irons in the fire and pigs were pretty low on the profit side and high on time requirement (fences).

Fattening out my last sow now.  Kept her as a bred gilt and already sold the piglets.  Bittersweet.  Will miss having pigs, but it frees up some time and besides they are HARD on the ground.
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Offline starmac

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #36 on: March 15, 2018, 06:11:28 PM »
It has been many years since I have kept up with the price of hogs, but I can't imagine boars that size selling for 30 bucks.
For several years we kept around 300 head and raise all our own sows, so, we bought, sold and traded boars on a regular basis. I do not remember what we got or laid back then, but it was much more than that, heck back then we got as much as 25 bucks and never under 20 for weaners at 6 weeks old.
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Offline coxy

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #37 on: March 15, 2018, 06:50:57 PM »
they are getting 100-150$ for piglets around here and 200-300$ for butcher size go figure its not worth raising your own i only get from 2 people i know what they feed  there is a few people that feed  there pigs road kill steve_smileythat must be the nastiest meat ever think i would rather have them boars that mike was talking about ;D 

Offline olcowhand

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #38 on: March 15, 2018, 06:58:47 PM »
Mike,
As you can see by the response you've gotten on this thread, FF Members have as much (if not more) experience opening up different kinds of Hogs as they (we?) have opening up different kinds of wood. I'm humbled by both the wealth of knowledge and the willingness to share it, but all was given freely in your best interest.
Good luck in your future endeavors to find meat. If you lived closer, I'd find a way of getting you some cheap pork.....
PA Walnut, That is some good looking smoked meat you got going there; when's breakfast?
They say the mind is the first to go; I'm glad it's something I don't use!

Ezekiel 36:26-27

Offline WLC

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #39 on: March 15, 2018, 07:53:05 PM »
OK, so I'm a visual kinda dude... Sunday had bacons on the smoker! (cooking chicken under it to receive the holy-grail drippings)  :o

Be sure to leave skin on if you want to make great bacon....easy to cure and smoke with a few critical steps in mind. Can send you some tips!

(Image hidden from quote, click to view.)


Now I gotta wipe the drool off my puter keyboard...  Man that made my mouth water.  Would love the chicken marinated in bacon drippings while it cooked too.
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #40 on: March 16, 2018, 08:42:46 AM »
I can't imagine boars that size selling for 30 bucks. For several years we kept around 300 head and raise all our own sows, so, we bought, sold and traded boars on a regular basis. I do not remember what we got or laid back then, but it was much more than that, heck back then we got as much as 25 bucks and never under 20 for weaners at 6 weeks old.


I agree, good breeding boars are valuable.  Old butcher boars, however, are barely worth taking to market.  Often they bring more than $30, but more like $40-60 is common.  No one wants them.  I saw one around 600 Lbs brought $27.  (Yes he was well muscled, not skin and bones.)  The small operation that have popped up generally wants a 250-300 Lb boar as they are one boar operations and need something not too big for gilts but big enough for sows.  

The old hog markets are dead.  Killed by confinement pork.  The old buying stations that put groups of pigs together are gone.  (At least within 2 hours of me for sure.)  There are are only two outlets for a little guy like me.  1.  Custom butchers (taking to auction eventually ends up at a custom butcher, so really the same deal) 2.  Contract raising for someone like Niman Ranch under their dietary and welfare requirements.  This is something I intend to look at real hard once the house is done and I have a bit more time.
Lucas 6-13+slabber, Mr. Sawmill bandmill, orange chainsaws, JD SSL, Case Backhoe, farm tractors, trailers, and 150ish acres of trees.  Fledgling woodshop with CNC router, laser engraver, Woodmaster 712, and a Berlin 108 moulder (project).  Oh, and a lovely (patient) wife and four offbearers.

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #41 on: March 16, 2018, 11:24:28 PM »
Paul got one of em cut up today.  I think id be best to get an oversize garden and some fruit trees established and then  getting a piglet or two.. Just to be sure i can feed them affordably.  Im told feed the heck out of em and slaughter in 3 months.  Thoughts?
Revelation 3:20

Offline starmac

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #42 on: March 17, 2018, 12:08:11 AM »
Mike, 5 months with good feed, is generally how long to to top one off.
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Offline coxy

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #43 on: March 17, 2018, 12:10:26 AM »
when we had pigs we fed the hog feed then a month before butchering we boarded up the pen so they couldn't run around and fed them 2x as much as normal but fed them corn meal   we found a barrel of grapes one time along the highway and fed it to the pigs they where so drunk they couldn't walk did the same with a barrel of apples :D     

Offline starmac

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #44 on: March 17, 2018, 12:52:13 AM »
I used to show hogs at the fairs, the biggest being Houston livestock show, I took 18th in the barrow class out of probably 500, not good enough to get in the money, but pretty good for an old country boy that didn't spend the big bucks to compete.

I did not have time to walk the hog a mile or more a day, like you have to do to be competitive, so I built a pen 6 foot wide and 60 feet long. An 8 foot shed with a raised floor and the feeder on one end and the waterer on the other end, now this was down on the coast and it rained a lot, so most of the time it would sink nearly to its belly in mud getting back and forth to water.
If you want the best meat ever, make your hog exorcise, in later years I would buy show hogs from the fairs partly to support the kids showing them, but mainly for the meat. We raised hogs all through my youth, and the meat from a regular pen raised hog, or pork bought at the store will never compare to it.
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #45 on: March 17, 2018, 08:48:39 AM »
   I had a co-worker said he had a neighbor in SC who raised them in in tight pens where they could not turn around. I think he had them head to tail 6 pens deep and just fed the first one.. I think PETA shut him down.
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #46 on: March 17, 2018, 12:41:35 PM »
I think my biggest fear is having to castrate a live critter.  Its just not in my DNA yet.  I shot my dog of 13 years this past winter, so i can shoot a pig, and ive helped sawzall a few, no big deal.   Tge thought of cutting his nuts out while he kicks and squeels in pain makes me feel like a horrible person already.  I dunno how to cross that bridge but i know im gonna have to. 
Revelation 3:20

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #47 on: March 17, 2018, 12:46:26 PM »
I recall holding the piglets while dad cut, gave vit shot, pulled their tusk teeth. 
The screaming from them started the second you got a hold of them and never changed till you let them go.
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #48 on: March 17, 2018, 01:03:29 PM »
Mike, 5 months with good feed


Agree completely.  

We planted a bunch of fruit trees with staggered ripening.  Figure from dropped fruit & nuts it should eventually cover a lot of the diet from July to early July, but will still need summer protein.  

Corn finish is nice, but I prefer acorn and hickory finish.  Helps that we have an abundance of them.  ;D

Castrating isn't bad.  Ear plugs are the most important piece of equipment.  ;)  Younger is better, but have done them up to 50-60 Lbs with 2 people.  We had a small operation the last few year with plenty of room for the pigs.  As such, I didn't clip teeth or tails and had no issues. 
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Offline POSTON WIDEHEAD

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #49 on: March 17, 2018, 04:33:02 PM »
I think my biggest fear is having to castrate a live critter.   
What about the critter?  :o :o :o
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Offline coxy

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #50 on: March 17, 2018, 05:34:23 PM »
why is a goat posting on a hog topic  ??? ??? ??? :D :D :D

Offline olcowhand

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #51 on: March 17, 2018, 06:43:04 PM »
So what methods have you all used to castrate pigs? I was taught (and it seemed to work) to slice down each sack and pull gently on each testicle until you feel it come loose way up there. Douse liberally with a disinfectant, and turn 'em loose. The squealing stops (I agree that the squealing starts when you restrain them, and doesn't change pitch until they're turned loose). Also, I've used a straight razor on every animal (calves, colts, goats, sheep, cats, etc.) to incise. I've never lost a barrow, although I can honestly say I know I haven't put up the kind of numbers some of you have. I've castrated many more calves than pigs.....
I also will say that I've never eaten an "Oyster" from a pig, either (had many a bull calf provide a meal). Nor have I ever castrated one over ~60 lbs.
The older they are, the more they miss the "ballast", and their chance for survival and proper healing diminishes as they get "bigger".   
They say the mind is the first to go; I'm glad it's something I don't use!

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Offline luvmexfood

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #52 on: March 17, 2018, 08:25:57 PM »
If all the hogs had been killed that were talked about being killed Jeff would never have to by pork for the pig roast again. :D
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #53 on: March 17, 2018, 10:39:52 PM »
 :D 8)

Offline starmac

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #54 on: March 17, 2018, 11:13:52 PM »
The way I always did it was to pull the nut out and instead of making a clean slice, was to rub the knife back and forth instead of slicing, if that makes sense to you. I forget the reason we were taught to do it, but it was suppose to be better on them than a quick slice.

An old boar is actually easy to do, probably easier than a 60 pounder or so, just get a rope behind his tusks, they will always pull against the rope, making it an easy  job, just be careful releasing them.

What we used for disinfectant was purina furox, it came in a small spray can and left a bright yellow stain that had to wear off, best stuff I have ever used for open injuries even on humans. I don't know if it is still available or not, but would like to get my hands on some for emergencies if it is.
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Offline luvmexfood

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #55 on: March 18, 2018, 12:17:14 AM »
I remember the yellow stuff. Took a dog to the vet one and the vet saw my finger where the dog had bit me and used it on me along with his vet supplies. Old country vet. Practiced half a day even his later years. Last dog I took to him he put in two stitches and charged me two dollars.

Caught a many pigs for castration. When they started squealing you sure had to watch for the mommy sow.
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #56 on: March 18, 2018, 07:05:41 AM »
would be nice to get some human mothers to care as much for there little ones as a mother pig does hers  

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #57 on: March 18, 2018, 08:45:20 AM »
would be nice to get some human mothers to care as much for there little ones as a mother pig does hers  


Castrate as well
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Online mike_belben

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #58 on: March 18, 2018, 12:03:45 PM »
 :D
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #59 on: March 18, 2018, 03:18:09 PM »
would be nice to get some human mothers to care as much for there little ones as a mother pig does hers  


Castrate as well
ill line them up you cut them off  :D :D 8) 8)

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #60 on: March 18, 2018, 07:52:37 PM »
Caught a many pigs for castration. When they started squealing you sure had to watch for the mommy sow.
Reminds me of a story...
I got a call from my uncle once to help him move his sow because it was time to wean the piglets, no big deal I knew the sow,BIG gentle giant. It was about 150' between the farrowing shed and the area she had to go to We usually just led her out with a pail of grain while one of us held back the piglets with a sheet of plywood no big deal. This time for whatever reason she would absolutely not leave the pen we tried everything and I mean everything she would not budge. She was gentle as always but was not going leave and she was too big to man handle.
Finally our patience was wearing pretty dang thin. I reached in and grabbed a piglet and walked out without her seeing me for some odd reason it didn't squeal. I gave it a slight squeeze and in the same instant as it squealed that sow came out of the shed like it was shot out of a cannon and she was seriously pithed off. She looked like the cross between an angry hippo and a snapping crocodile with her sights set on me. I took off on a dead run towards where she had to go with her in hot pursuit and gaining faster than I was comfortable with. As I went by the pen I tossed the piglet over the fence and kept going as fast as I could convinced she was gonna introduce me to my maker.
I finally looked over my shoulder only to see my uncle and a bunch of his friends about rolling on the ground laughing, apparently the sow went right into her pen after her baby but I was convinced she was still after me, I don't think I've ever run that fast in my life.
Sorry for the long post but yes I agree most sows are excellent mamas,and LOOKOUT when one of their babies start squealing.

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #61 on: March 19, 2018, 09:18:50 AM »
 :D  Yep.  Working litters was the biggest threat when we raised them on dirt.  Part of why we started castrating after they were weaned.   ;)

Methods mentioned pretty well nail it.  Always used to use razor blades to make the incision.  After I worked in a confinement operation a few years, I grew to like scalpels.  Once open, little ones were just pulled (was supposed to heal better that way).  Bigger pigs required pull and slice.  We sprayed with iodine.  

Only caution is to watch for scrotal ruptures.  It will look like one large round sack instead of a pair.  Best to leave it alone as castrating them is a death sentence in my experience.  It tends to be genetic from what I've heard.
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Offline Chuck White

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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #62 on: March 20, 2018, 02:52:31 PM »
We have cut them like that, then just threw in a couple of stitches and never had any issues!
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Re: Hog advice
« Reply #63 on: March 21, 2018, 09:18:14 PM »
I agree, we had a couple boars that my brother brought back from NDSU one year while he was going to school there (he worked on the hog farm), they both consistently threw ruptured pigs.  It didn't take long to get rid of them, it was something genetic and you had to sow up almost every one after you cut it, took forever  :-\.


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