Today was an epic cage-clean out day. It started this morning with a trip to the produce shop at about 10am to stock up on hay and grain mix as we were almost running on empty. Then it was time for all of the pigs to get their weekly dip/bath and weigh in. Then they all had grass time while I cleaned out 11 small cages and the HUGE mansion cage.
I was finished by about 6pm!
At about 5pm, while I was busy sweeping up the mess and mixing up the grain/chaff blend (and trying to stop my kids from killing each other with their doll-pram wars), I looked over and noticed that Willa was busy cleaning up a tiny white curly newborn bub! I put the grain mix down on the table (where it was promptly knocked all over the floor by Master 20moth old), and hovered around Willa's freshly cleaned cage wanting to make sure she was doing ok, but not wanting to freak her out. I had literally only popped her back about 30mins before this!
Bub no. 2 arrived very soon after I noticed labour was underway, and Willa looked a bit confused. She kind of just sat on him still in the sack and kept licking her first born. At this stage I'd realised that my youngest son had spilt about 3kg work of grain mix over the patio I'd JUST swept - so was momentarily distracted. When I got back to Willa she still hadn't cleaned her new bub, so I intervened and pulled the sack off for her - it had been maybe 30sec since he was born. She was very accommodating and just moved aside for me. Bub didn't look so good. He didn't move or make an attempt to breathe. I rubbed his little chest with my fingers for a bit, rubbed his head, moved him closer to mum - who gave him a few licks (then went back to the first bub again), when FINALLY he took a breath and started to wriggle around.
I honestly think if it had been a few seconds longer before I got him out of that sack, he wouldn't have made it.
Then bub no. 3 arrived while I was sweeping up the spilt grain mix. I just got in there and removed his sack right away this time. Again, Willa paid most attention to bubs 1 and 2, and poor little last-born just had to lay there looking around in bewilderment at this new world.
Because it all happened so late in the day - and just before dinner/baths/bedtime for the kids, I quickly checked each bub over - weighed them, took a pic, then got them back to mum - dry pics will have to come tomorrow. The bubs are a good size though, and Willa is doing well.
Little 'Calico' - weighed in at 85g. She is 'texel' coated - in that she doesn't have any rosettes. She may end up looking 'texel' or may end up looking 'rex'. It will depend on whether Willa (aby x texel) has passed on her short-coat (Abyssinian dad) genes or her long-coat (texel mum) genes. All bubs have a 50/50 chance of long coats versus short coats. So we just have to watch them grow over the next few weeks...
This is 'Caesar' - the second born bub. He is back and white and also has the potentially 'texel' / 'Rex' coat.
And this is 'Charlie' - third born. He appears to be red/white and chocolate agouti (chocolate base/red tip). Charlie has inherited mums rosettes. He has them on his rump, head, shoulders and possibly his middle (really hard to tell with the wet curls!). IF he inherits mums long-coat gene, he'll look 'curly-coated sheba'-ish. If he inherits mum's short-coat gene he'll look 'Somali'-ish (rex coat with aby-like rosettes).