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Other name(s): Mangalitza Pig; Mangalica Pig;
Wooly Pig; Curly Hair Hog; Curly Coated Pig
Scientific name: Sus domestica
Country / Place of origin: Hungary
History: The Mangalitsa Pig is a European unimproved breed from Hungary and the Balkans that is descended directly from wild boar populations. The Mangalitsa is classified as an extreme "lard-type" pig breed, which, unlike "meat-type" pig breeds, produces a very fat and marbled meat. In March 2006, 17 Mangalitza (UK spelling) were imported from Austria into the UK. These are registered with the British Pig Association (BPA) and the pedigrees are being maintained on the BPA Mangalitza Herd Book. In August 2006, Wooly Pigs, an American company, imported a herd from Austria to the United States.
Current Uses: The primary product made from the Mangalitsa pig is sausage, usually packed in the pig's duodenum. The minced meat is seasoned with salt, pepper, sweet paprika, and other spices. It is then eaten in slices with pickled vegetables. The pork is also served braised with sauerkraut, potatoes, and stuffed peppers as a side dish. Farmers also produce smoked hams.The Mangalitsa produces too little lean meat so it has been gradually replaced by modern domestic breeds. It is usually fed with a mix of wild pasture, supplemented with potatoes and pumpkins produced on the farm.
Appearance: There are three Mangalitsa types - Blonde, Swallow bellied and Red. They all have the same behavior although the only difference is the color. The Blonde Mangalitza is blonde. The Swallow-bellied (originally produced by crossing the Blonde Mangalitsa with the extinct Black mangalitsa, has a blonde belly and feet with black covering the rest of the body. The Red Mangalitsa (produced by crossing the Blonde Mangalitsa with the Szalonta breed) is ginger. Other breeds (black, wolf, and baris) have died out as pure-bred forms, though their reconstruction from selective breeding of mixed varieties is debated in Hungary.
Average weight: N/A
Lifespan: 6 - 9 years
Grooming: Pigs are one of the easiest domestic animals to groom. They only require a good washing with a mild shampoo to remove dirt from the body and feet. For show pigs, excess hair is clipped from the tail and ears. A hairbrush can be used to tidy up the hair and remove any dust particles or sawdust that may be clinging to the animal’s coat.
Diet: As omnivores that eat plants and animals, pigs will consume almost anything that is edible like fruits, roots, flowers, grass, insects, worms, all types of meat, and even leftover scraps from the dinner table.Unlike ruminant animals (cattle and goats), pigs have a single stomach. For healthy and fast growth, pigs require a high-energy diet composed of grain (corn, oats, wheat, barley), plus protein and vitamin supplements. Most commercially available feed for pigs combine various farm grains and the necessary supplements to ensure rapid and efficient development. Pigs are best allowed to self-feed or eat as much as they want during the day to enable them to grow as fast as they normally can. Feeding should always include a good supply of clean, fresh drinking water.
Housing: Pigs are active, curious animals that require room to explore, exercise, and just be their natural energetic selves. Sufficient space, relative to their size and weight, is a primary consideration because pigs that are crowded or confined to small spaces become stressed, and healthy growth and development is hindered.Although constantly roaming and appreciative of open yards and fresh air, pigs also require a shed or housing that will let them sleep on a dry and clean area at night. Ideal ambient temperatures are 60-70F. Warm shelters with wood chip bedding are a must during cold months; water misters are recommended for the hottest months. Pig housing should also include a feeder and a drinking water dispenser (usually a water barrel). Access to a water source makes it convenient to clean or hose out the pig shelters (and the pigs) as needed. Chain link fencing, shade trees, and a pond are recommended for backyard habitats. Pig owners are advised to check with local authorities for legislation regarding the ownership and keeping of pigs in their homes and backyards.
Health issues: Despite their energy and gregarious nature, Pigs are sensitive animals. They are easily stressed by travel, vaccinations, extreme temperatures, and new surroundings. Stress makes them susceptible to ailments like pneumonia and bronchitis (due also to their small lungs relative to their size). They are also susceptible to animal viruses like influenza. Pigs commonly suffer from mad itch (or pseudo rabies), dysentery, and parasites (lice, ticks, and ascarid worms).Healthy pigs have shiny hair, bright eyes, strong appetites, and high energy. Their normal temperature is 102.5F. Deviations from the normal temperature and other signs of poor health including diarrhea and coughing should promptly be brought to the attention of a veterinarian.
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