Now, back to the book report ... Chapter three deals with selection of your pigs (covering everything from feeder pigs to gilts and sows to boars) and even has some general information about the different breeds out there. I have to admit that this chapter was a little overwhelming because was so much information and I once again realized how much of an art it is to be a very good livestock farmer. But, I did appreciate everything in the chapter even if it will take years for me to learn by trial and error.
As an aside, another thing that has popped into my mind as I'm writing this is that Kelly Klober (the author) seems to have a vast amount of knowledge when it comes to pigs. Much of that knowledge, I'm sure, has come from being around people that know the art of a selecting and raising a high quality swine herd. It is great to be able to have it written down in a book, but I will say that I wish I had a mentor like him around to show me and help me as I muck my way through the pig world!
Mr. Klober goes into great detail on some of the things that you need to look for when selecting pigs, especially pigs destined to become "range hogs". One area that he talks about being very important are the feet and legs. Those legs are going to be very important for a pig that will be outside and have the need and chance to move around. In a confinement setting it is not as big of an issue, so some breeding has taken away a good leg on each corner of the pig.
He even writes about the type of tail to look for when selecting. Mr. Klober says that large tail with the base well up on the body can be a good indicator of ham size and carcass length. This is the kind of knowledge that I'm talking about!