Happy birthday to Esther and Sissy

Today was a special day which normally gets overlooked in the mad rush before Christmas so this year I’m quietly pleased with myself for marking the special event with a blog post

It’s hard for me to believe in a way but our 2 main Tamworth breeding sows – Sissy and Esther – are 5 years old today and they were only 8 weeks old when we first collected them.

From such a subdued beginning as part of our 3rd batch of 4 weaners, they’ve managed to make themselves an integral part of our life here. I can hardly imagine life without them now.

Back in 2015, after gaining some experience with 3 previous sets of meat pigs, we bought another 4 pedigree Tamworth weaners. The idea was that 2 of them would be for meat (the “eaters”) and 2 would be kept for breeding (the “keepers”).

When we collected them from the breeder they were marked to indicate the two most promising to keep and as it turned out over time that was how they developed.

First off the trailer in 2015, the keepers!

It’s quite a contrast to look back at the early photos now particularly as Esther currently has her latest litter for company. I’m sure she appreciates the social aspect but they’re just over 3 months old and probably are a little annoying at times – especially meal times!

Esther – all grown up with little ‘uns of her own

By contrast, Sissy just has Fifi for company at the moment but will farrow in about 3 weeks so she’s quite a size! I expect that if she does know what’s coming then she’s appreciating the relative peace and quiet for now.

Sissy – hopefully with little ‘uns coming soon

Over the years I have learned to treat both sows with a certain amount of respect and caution but not because they are in any way aggressive. If I had to guess, a full grown Tamworth sow must weigh at least 250-300kg so it’s a good idea not to let them stand on your foot or even worse knock you over in the mud!

We will continue to give all our breeding sows the best life possible which will include their retirement years when that time comes. They have been a part of our lives for almost 5 years so they are considered part of the family now

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