The Poland China is one of the breeds of swine that is a result of numerous crossbreedings to arrive at a line with highly desirable traits. It is said that they were developed in Ohio mainly from crossing Berkshires and Hampshires. They are said to rank the highest in U.S. pork production in pound of hog per sow per year.
Appearance / health:
Having descended from the Berkshire, the Poland China has similar markings. The breed is black in color with six white points (nose, tail, and legs). The ears are medium-sized and droopy. The body is long, meaty, and muscular.
Despite their energy and gregarious nature, pigs are sensitive animals. They are easily stressed by travel, vaccinations, extreme temperatures, and new surroundings. Stress makes them susceptible to ailments like pneumonia and bronchitis (due also to their small lungs relative to their size). They are also susceptible to animal viruses like influenza. Pigs commonly suffer from mad itch (or pseudo rabies), dysentery, and parasites (lice, ticks, and ascarid worms).
Healthy pigs have shiny hair, bright eyes, strong appetites, and high energy. Their normal temperature is 102.5F. Deviations from the normal temperature and other signs of poor health including diarrhea and coughing should promptly be brought to the attention of a veterinarian.
Behavior / temperament:
As omnivores that love to eat, pigs can be fun to watch while they explore their surroundings in search for something to munch on. They use their snouts to smell and unearth a potential meal. They are intelligent and social animals that quickly get used to the presence and affection of humans.
Some Pigs are intelligent enough to learn tricks, obey commands, and use a litter box. Because they have no sweat glands, they tend to cool themselves by rolling in water or mud. The mud that dries on their skin serves as a sunscreen and protection from parasites like ticks, lice, and flies.
Housing / diet:
Pigs are active, curious animals that require room to explore, exercise, and just be their natural energetic selves. Sufficient space, relative to their size and weight, is a primary consideration because pigs that are crowded or confined to small spaces become stressed, and healthy growth and development is hindered.
Although constantly roaming and appreciative of open yards and fresh air, pigs also require a shed or housing that will let them sleep on a dry and clean area at night. Ideal ambient temperatures are 60-70F. Warm shelters with wood chip bedding are a must during cold months; water misters are recommended for the hottest months.
Pig housing should also include a feeder and a drinking water dispenser (usually a water barrel). Access to a water source makes it convenient to clean or hose out the pig shelters (and the pigs) as needed. Chain link fencing, shade trees, and a pond are recommended for backyard habitats.
Pig owners are advised to check with local authorities for legislation regarding the ownership and keeping of pigs in their homes and backyards.
As omnivores that eat plants and animals, pigs will consume almost anything that is edible like fruits, roots, flowers, grass, insects, worms, all types of meat, and even leftover scraps from the dinner table.
Unlike ruminant animals (cattle and goats), pigs have a single stomach. For healthy and fast growth, pigs require a high-energy diet composed of grain (corn, oats, wheat, barley), plus protein and vitamin supplements. Most commercially available feed for pigs combine various farm grains and the necessary supplements to ensure rapid and efficient development.
Pigs are best allowed to self-feed or eat as much as they want during the day to enable them to grow as fast as they normally can. Feeding should always include a good supply of clean, fresh drinking water.
great character, handsome pig breeds, adaptable pigs, large litter, breeding program, nice body shape
A Pig named Rosie.
I was lucky enough to be given a Poland China piglet in November of 2010. Her mother and father were let lose to run in a pasture on 100 acres of land. A bear claimed the entire litter but one gilt and that was Rosie. The neighbor wanted to butcher the mom so gave this little calico pig to my daughter. Fear ran through me! I was deathly afraid of pigs. I mean they are huge and mean! Dirty and smelly. Okay this one wasn't huge , wasn"t mean and wasn't scary and changed my entire attitude toward pigs.
She was a very easy keeper. We kept her in a stall filled with straw that was cleaned out each morning. She was only stalled at night and ran forty acres with a group of goats. She never strayed from the property and did well on a diet of grass, bugs and snakes. Now we fed her leftovers from our dinner the night before and breakfast in the morning and she was given pig food at night . She had a very large stall with a tire in the middle for entertainment ours' and her's ! In the heat of the humid summer she would seek relief in our pond and in the winter she did very well by burying herself in straw.
We were total newbies to pigs so she was de-wormed but that was all but was never sick.
Her weight gain was average with her weight being 400 lbs at 6 months old.
Personality wise she was the nicest pig on the block! She would take a stroll with us around the property and once protected us from a mastiff/pitbull mix. Her best friend was my pry Abby and she loved the goat babies. Now she loved marshmallows. I believe that since she was going to grow to be a large sow that it would be easier to work with a 1,000 pound animal if he or she likes you. So I trained Rosie, to "come", "watch me", "sit", "bow" and "dance". Yep you read that correct-dance. Oh she also made a nice foot rest too. I loved that pig.
Now for commercial or meat? I don't know. We had planned on breeding her and eating the resulting offspring with keeping maybe two sows from the litter. We didn't get the opportunity because we had to move from our beloved farm in the middle of Heaven to Florida so from Heaven to Hell essentially.
Don't worry Rosie was sold to a wonderful family who drove eight hours to buy her. They are my Facebook buddies and she is a pet . She is a 600 lb pet pig. She was that kind of pig though.
Negatives- average growth. Can be very pushy. They are a very difficult pig to contain. Escape artist . Rosie prefers to stay with the goats at her current farm and they can't keep her in with the other pigs.Love to root and will create holes if they don't have a ring in their nose. (Rosie didn't)
Positives-loyal, loving, hardy, nice barrel shape, smart and over all a really good pig for a beginner. Don't require a lot of commercial feed if you have pasture. My neighbor raises his on corn and pasture. He only feeds them corn when he wants to do a count , vet , butcher or sell.
Rosie was one in a million and I still miss her.
From Saveachicken Oct 22 2011 7:33PM
Great breed for putting in the freezer!
We raised several different breeds of pigs on my family farm in North Texas (mainly Durocs, Yorkshires, and Poland Chinas), and Poland Chinas have always been my favorite pig breed.
They didn't root as much as other breeds, they were able to take the Texas heat far better than the other breeds (especially Yorkshires), they're beautiful pigs, and above all, they had an outstanding taste.
We had our pigs slaughtered and processed using German recipes from a German butcher shop that was close to us in Muenster, Texas, and to this day the Poland China sausages and pork chops that we got from them remain the best pig that I've ever eaten (and I've lived in Germany and eaten German sausage, so that should tell you something!).
If you're looking for a pig to put into the freezer for the family, I'd highly recommend Poland China, and as a side note, the largest pig ever recorded, Big Bill, was also a Poland China from Tennessee. He clocked in at 2,552 pounds!.
From mshawnkirby Aug 6 2015 10:02AM