I mentioned in the last post that the pig barn was being built. While many people seem to be longing for the pigs, I am not sure the pigs are feeling the same. They appear to be quite content in their vacation home. Some photos to document their journey
The Pigs and the Bears are doing just fine with this temporary set up. Granted, we’re not letting the bears near the pigs. Pigs get half the house and the bears get the other.
Look for the pigs back in the farmyard the first week in May.
Here’s a few then and now photos of some of your favorite Museum critters. Enjoy.
MAX OUR STEER
SCOUT OUR DUCK
AUGGIE OUR PIG
One of our Master Teachers shared this photo with me. Any thoughts on what the two might be conversing about? (Remember the photo of Lightning and Max?)
You may have heard about our newest addition to the farmyard, Auggie the pig. He is a cutie! Originally, he had been living elsewhere on grounds while he was in quarantine (which just means he is kept away from the other animals while we monitor him to make sure he is healthy). Once he was ready to move to his permanent home in the farmyard, it was time to introduce him to his new roommate, Miss Piggy.
We decided to record the initial meeting between Miss Piggy and Auggie. It is normal for pigs to fight when they are first introduced. They have to figure out who is going to be the “boss.” The keepers first experienced this type of difficult interaction when Miss Piggy met our last pig, Squealer. Although it was hard to watch Auggie go through the same introduction, we know from experience that it is best to just let the pigs hash it out. If we tried to separate them every time they weren’t getting along, then the fighting would escalate each time we tried to re-introduce them. However, by keeping them together and monitoring them closely for the first week, they will eventually work through the initial rivalry and eventually become companions.
Although Auggie is much smaller than Miss Piggy, he is also faster! Which means, fortunately, he did not sustain any injuries during the introduction. We are pleased to tell you that now, about 2 weeks since their introduction, they are sleeping side-by-side in their hay at night and are getting along quite well!!
You can hear some of the commentary from the video, which is an array of different keepers talking while they watch the introduction take place. All of the keepers working that day, along with Sherry and her daughter, were monitoring the pigs while they were first introduced. You may be able to hear Sherry mention the word piloerection, which is one of Larry’s “Big Words of the Month.” You can also hear Sherry say at the end of the video that Kent would need to check on them every 15 minutes while he was cleaning the farmyard that morning.
I went to grab the waterproof camera- the one that Erin refers to as hers or the one she suckered me in to buying- so I could take some photos that people had been asking for. I couldn’t find it. I bet Erin went away on vacation and left it in her pocket. So, instead of showing you the photos of my hair-balled cat who I was home sick with, or our new pig shelter, or the keepers hard at work, I am stuck showing you baby photos. Auggie baby photos. Enjoy.
This is Auggie, a three month old pot bellied pig. He arrived Saturday weighing a hefty 20 pounds. He’ll spend 30 days in quarantine, and then we’ll introduce him to Miss Piggy. We’ll continue to post photos on the Blog so you can keep up with him prior to his arrival in the Farmyard in mid December.