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Bentheim Black Pied Pig: Characteristics, Distribution, Protection, and More

Bentheim Black Pied pigs are an excellent choice for farmers who want to raise pigs with a taste that consumers appreciate. The color of the pig is characteristic, it has large black spots scattered throughout the body, it is precocious and fertile. This animal is currently in danger of extinction, however today, this breed is gaining importance, since, unlike breeding pigs, it has a better quality of meat.

This is one of the breeds of pigs that farmers find works well for breeding and consumption. This pig is hardy, has the good maternal ability, and does very well outdoors, especially when moving on pastures. The meat of this breed of pig is darker than that of the commercial pig and much tastier than that of other types of pigs found in the freezer at your grocery store.

Bentheim Black Pied Pig details and origin

The Bentheim Black Pied Pig is a breed of swine from the county of Bentheim in Emsland and the adjacent part of Drenthe, especially around Coevorden. The proportion of lard is relatively high, the meat itself has a high content of intramuscular fat, which is beneficial for the taste and appearance of the meat.

The Bentheim Black Pied Pig is a rare breed of domestic pig originating from the Berkshire county of the United Kingdom. It is currently classified as vulnerable or endangered, and in 2008 fewer than 300 breeding sows were known to exist. Although the herds of Berkshire pigs are kept by the Rare Breeds Survival Trust in England at Aldenham Country Park, Hertfordshire. And the breed’s herds are also kept by the South of England Rare Breed Center in Kent.

Some animals of the breed are also kept in Australia and New Zealand with less than a hundred purebred sows available there now. The Berkshire American Association, established in the United States in 1875, gives pedigrees only to pigs imported directly from established English herds or to those directly traced back to such imported animals. The Bentheim pig breed is also bred in Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan, under the trademark Kagoshima Kurobuta.

Characteristics

The Bentheim pig is a medium to the large-sized animal. Modern animals are almost entirely black in color, but the original breed was a sandy brown hue. Modern animals have white tips on their legs, nose, and tail. They have relatively short legs, and they have pricked ears.

These types of pigs have a relatively short snout with the nose turned upwards, they also have a disc-shaped face with a large jaw and an inverted nose when viewed from the side.

The live average body weight of the mature Bentheim piebald pig is about 270 kilograms, and the boars are much larger than the sows. On the side, they are very deep, with a strong, uniform, and muscular dorsal arch, with a firm constitution. Short neck and short, locked legs with strong legs.

These types of pigs or pigs have a relatively short snout. If they are seen in profile, it could be noticed that they have a slight plate-like shape on their faces with a large double chin and an upturned nose. The ears are medium and erect.

Classification

Bentheim piebald pigs are one of the oldest identifiable breeds. These black pigs, with white “spots” (white areas on their feet, snout, and tail) were documented more than 350 years ago and arrived in the United States in the early 1800s. In 1875, the breeders formed the American Association of this pig, becoming the first group of breeders and registry of pigs in the world. Like all pigs, it belongs to the pig family.

Pigs come in two essential types: the good-for-lard type and the good-for-bacon type. As the name implies, lard pigs produce higher concentrations of fat, which was traditionally used for cooking and for the production of lubricants. These pigs are compact, thickly muscled, have short legs, and have deep bodies.

Behavior

These animals are specimens of an excellent disposition, friendly and curious. Piebald pigs are intelligent animals and are well suited for the extensive pig farming system. They are well known for their quality meat production.

The meat of this kind of pork is highly appreciated for its juiciness, flavor, and tenderness, it is pink in color and highly marbled. The meat is rich in a high-fat content, which makes it very suitable for long, high-temperature cooking. This animal is a relatively fast-growing pig. And it takes between 180 and 195 days from birth to reach the commercial weight of about 113 kilograms.

Distribution

The Bentheim pig is a domestic breed native to Germany and the rarest breed of pig in the country. The Bentheim breed is believed to have been the result of the crossing of the Cornwall and Berkshire breeds in the 20th century. The Bentheim pig was raised primarily in northwestern Germany, and despite the breed’s popularity at the time, it nearly became extinct in the 1950s and was subsequently listed as a “rare breed.”

This population decline was partly due to Germans shifting their consumption preferences towards a leaner type of pork.

Reproduction

This kind of pig is characterized by having a good maternal capacity with high milk production, and it performs well in an outdoor environment.

Protection

This animal had a severe population decline and therefore closed the herd book in 1964. The herd book was reopened in 1988 thanks to the dedication of a breeder. The herd book was based on the records of this single breeder. It is estimated that there are currently only about 420 registered breeding animals left in the world.

The “Bentheim Swine Conservation Association” began its conservation efforts in 2003, helping to increase the population to 420 registered pedigree animals. At present, there are an estimated 90 Bentheim pig farmers around the world, and that the breed is also bred in Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

With the founding of the Bentheimer Pig Conservation Association, the establishment of a national herd book with the record of all remaining herds in Germany, the establishment of a coordinated breeding program, and a modern marketing strategy, the future of this Pig breed worth preserving should have a long-term perspective.

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