Archive for April 4th, 2009

As happy as two pigs in a wallow

When the sun’s shining bright in the sky, all warm blooded creatures look for ways to cool down. Many animals (and humans!) sweat, but pigs are unable to use this as a cooling function, which is one of the reasons they like wallowing in the mud. The cool mud lowers their temperature, and protects their skin from sunburn and insect bites.

If you don’t provide your outdoor pigs with a wallow, they’ll make their own, knocking over their water bucket to turn the dry earth into mud.

As the weather gets warmer, I’ll move the pigs into the middle of the field, which is spongy in summer (perfect for wallowing) but knee-deep in mud in the winter.

However, I was caught out earlier this week when it was hotter than I expected. Perky and Fergie knocked over two buckets of water and … well, see for yourselves:

Fergie and Perky - 2 April 2009

Fergie and Perky get the mud nice and squishy

Perky and Fergie - 2 April 2009

Perky enjoys the fruits of her labour

Fergie - 2 April 2009

Fergie arranges the mud to her liking

Fergie - 2 April 2009

Fergie was lying in the mud a spilt second before I took this photo, but I think it was a bit colder than she expected as she lay down and promtly stood up again, before wandering off with a confused look on her face!