February 3, 2016

New Zealand farming. Pigs – Glossary of terms

Dr Clive Dalton

 Baconer: Pig slaughtered around 80kg live weight (60kg carcass weight) to produce bacon and ham.

Barrow:  A castrated male pig. Mainly an American term.

Boar:  Uncastrated male used for breeding but can be used for younger pigs.

·      Large white
·      Landrace
·      Berkshire
·      Welsh
·      Hampshire
·      Tamworth
·      Wessex saddleback
·      Large black
·      Hybrids from commercial breeding companies
·      Kunikuni Maori native pig
·      Feral pigs
Modern hybrid gilts of Large White and Landrace cross

 Farrowing: Process of giving birth to a litter.

Farrowing pen or crate:  Confined area where sows is held while farrowing or suckling piglets in first few weeks.

Sow confined in farrowing pen to allow piglets to suckle without being overlain.

 Farrowing index:  Average number of litters of piglets a sow produces in a year.

Sow and litter in farrowing pen given more space to stand up and move around.

Gilt: Female pig of any age from birth to having her first litter.

Hog:  General term (mainly American) for young pig.

Litter: All the piglets produced by a sow at one birth.

Porker: Pig slaughtered at about 50kg liveweight (40kg carcass weight) for fresh meat (pork).

Runt: Small poorly developed piglet in a litter.

Sow: Female kept for breeding which has had at least one litter.

Sucker:  Young pig of either sex still, sucking its dam.

Super porker:  Pig of bacon weight killed for trimmed pork cuts.

Tassels:  Seen on some feral pigs, e.g. NZ Kunikuni.

Tassle on Kunikuni pig's jowl

 Weaner:  Pig removed from suckling its mother from 3 weeks (early weaning) to 8-10 weeks (conventional weaning).

Large black 8-week old weaners

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