Picture-perfect pigs

Top-and-tail in the ark
Top-and-tail in the ark

I try not to indulge in too many photographs of the Gloucestershire Old Spots looking cute, for the simple reason that on 21 January they will be heading down the road to the abattoir, but this week I can’t resist – they’re just too charming. The way they sleep top-to-tail, whether under the elder in their run or snuggled up in their ark, is quite frankly adorable (though I’m sure there is a very sensible and practical reason behind it, such as the need to conserve body warmth).

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An unusual instance of a lone pig snoozing in front of the ark, our neighbour’s cottage in the background

Meanwhile, they’ve also managed to transform the ground of their entire run to a lovely crumbly soil – the chickens seem desperate to get in there and peck about – the grass is always greener, though in this case not literally – and clear a fair amount of their extended patch, too, preparing it nicely for our fruit trees.

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Planting an orchard is one of our plans for 2014 – does anyone else have a smallholding wishlist?

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