About Tamworth Hogs
In keeping with our goal of using "heritage" breeds,
we are acquiring and raising Tamworth Hogs. These old breeds are
very rare and indeed are on the endagered list, meaning they are
at risk of extinction, and are well worth preserving. As with all of our livestock we give our hogs names
as we feel closer to them that way and they each have their own
Tamworth hogs range from golden red to dark red, and it is thought
that the red pigmentation is what prevents them getting sunburned.
They have a long snout, upright ears, and a long, lean, and deep-sided
appearance (rather than the roundedness of today's industrially-farmed
pigs), and generally have a smooth hair coat without swirls or black
Originally raised in Ireland and known as the "Irish Grazer",
these hogs were imported to a farm in Tamworth, Staffordshire, England
in the early 19th century. Their more distant origins are unknown,
but they are thought to be a direct and true descendant of an Old
English breed, as various physical traits are thought to come from
wild boar. They were exported to to the U.S., Canada, Australia,
and New Zealand about 50 years later, by farmers who used them for
everything from moving rocks and clearing pastures to hauling carts
to selling live to providing great meat. Their numbers dropped dramatically
with the rise of "industrial" pigs, but the breed is slowly
coming back one piglet at a time.
Tamworths are hardy and adaptable, generally disease resistant,
and do not need sheltering even in harsh weather (they have been
known to make their own "shelters" when necessary). As
with our heritage Highland Cattle, our Tamworth Hogs are favored
for their ability to forage for food in less than ideal settings
for most pigs. They compliment the cattle by grazing for their food,
rather than relying largely on humans to provide for them. These
hogs are helped by additional grains, however, which we give them
Temperament and Behavior
are typically known for having good mothering instincts, especially
in suckling piglets. While they do not always yield the same number
of offspring at one time as modern pigs, they may breed longer.
We have learned through experience that they need just the right
place for birthing. Their size puts the newborns at risk of being
smothered or crushed.
Said to be intelligent and occassionally cunning,
these hogs quickly learn to respect the electric wires we use, along
with our stone fences, to carve out the multiple, manageable rotational
pastures and enclosures for our expecting sows and their new families.
These hogs yield high-quality lean meat, without fat marbling common
in many breeds. Their meat is known for excellent bacon, for which
it was bred in Tamworth, but as "the other white meat" it also cooks
up tender and moist like a good steak.
Our hogs and all of our livestock are raised on open pasture. The
Cattle, Sheep, Goats, Turkeys, Hogs etc all gets lots of fresh air,
sunshine, a wide diet of what nature provides.
Manures from the different animals provide other animals with vitamins
and minerals, the interna; parasites that effect Cattle as an example,
are dead ended by the hogs. The fowl eat the fly larve out of the
manure and thereby reduce the number of flys and negate the need
for chemical sprays
This is natures way of animals helping other animals.
These medium-sized hogs. Boars may weigh from 535 to 800 pounds
and sows from 450 to 650 pounds.