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VIDEO: Piglet thrives on cow's milk

BABE, the precocious Amamoor piglet, is continuing to drink cow's milk direct from the udder and doing very well on it too.

He is getting a free feed every day from Jenny, a jersey cross on the property of Trish and Derek Hume, at Blue Bell Cottage on the Amamoor Creek Rd.

The piglet, which somehow worked out he could take advantage of his own personal milk bar from the three-year-old bovine, is not at all shy about taking a drink while Jenny's own calf usually stands back and waits.

On the day The Gympie Times visited, Babe hadn't been to the milk bar yet, so when Jenny and another mum - a belted galloway called Gracie - sauntered up into the yard, Babe simply didn't wait for the slower Jenny to arrive and started drinking from Gracie instead.

But Gracie wasn't as obliging as Jenny and quickly kicked him away, but it can not have been too harsh as he continued sneaking in and grabbing as much milk as he could.

Eventually, the piglet realised Jenny was a better option and spent the next 15 minutes firmly attached to her teat, guzzling down as much as he could get.

The piglet, nicknamed Babe, is already bigger than his siblings, although a sister piglet is catching on fast and may soon be emulating her brother.

SOME SMART PIG: Jersey cross Jenny shares her milk with cheeky suckling pig Babe and her calf while (right) owner Trish Hume looks on in amusement.
SOME SMART PIG: Jersey cross Jenny shares her milk with cheeky suckling pig Babe and her calf while (right) owner Trish Hume looks on in amusement. Patrick Woods

It all started on Saturday when Trish went out to milk the cows.

"When I called the cows up to the yard, Babe was hanging on to Jenny's teat," she said. "I don't know how he got the idea - maybe he saw one of the calves drinking and thought it would be good.

"He's a pretty smart pig really, latching on to an available milk bar."

The couple have lived on their 9ha (23 acre) farm for about five years, moving from the Lockyer Valley, but it's the first time Trish has ever seen anything like it, although she has fed poddy calves off goats before.

"You couldn't teach piglets to do it - they'd squeal too much."

The piglets will be grown on to about 10 weeks before being sold.

"All the money will go towards raising funds for a new school in Cambodia, for orphaned and disadvantaged children," said Trish.

The new school will be at Kampong Speu, a remote village where many of the fathers have lost one or more limbs through land mine accidents, leaving them with no job prospects and their families among the "poorest of the poor".

Trish, who home schooled her now adult children, will also be one of the teachers at the new school.

"I'm not sure when it will all happen, but we're hoping it will be built and up and running this year," she said.

Gympie Times

Topics:  amamoor, milk, pig and calf



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