October 13, 2009

While most of campus was busy with parents’ weekend, one barn resident was busy preparing for parenthood. Spotty Pig, Gould Farm’s sow, spent the day Friday and Saturday working on a nest for her first litter. She grabbed mouthful after mouthful of grass from outside and added it to the dry straw we provided. She seemed relaxed and comfortable as she collected materials and fluffed her nest.

Spotty Pig Nesting

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Spotty Pig gave birth to 13 great looking piglets in the wee hours of Sunday morning. Ms Austin agreed to do the last night check at 4am, before leaving campus to catch a flight. She called to let me know there were piglets, “lots of them!” Ten piglets were already out, dry, and nursing. Soon after, however, 3 more were born.

This video clip was taken later Sunday morning. These piglets are only a few hours old!

Pig Pile Piglets!
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Spotty’s litter has unique markings. In addition to her red piglets with all the spots, her 4 piglets with black and copper stripes that run from head to tail are very unusual.

In addition to welcoming baby pigs and Gould families to our small town, Pete and I also welcomed his family. Reiley has been having a great time with Gramma, Sully, and Uncle John. Sully (known in some families as Grandpa), had family in Berlin, NH when he was growing up. His unfulfilled childhood dream was to walk across the railroad trestle that spans the Androscoggen River in Berlin. We took a drive through peak foliage to a short hike along the river. The trestle crossing was really cool!

We continued west and took the long way back to Bethel- up to Milan, Errol, Grafton Notch, etc.

We even saw a moose!

Uncle John (Mr. Hedden’s brother) at Screw Auger Falls in Grafton Notch State Park

It is strange when the dorm (and therefore our apartment) is so quiet. Hopefully students and faculty are all relaxing and refreshing after the high energy start of school.

Come on down to the barn next time you’re on campus!

Until next week,



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