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Castration “Station” Keeps Piglets Calm, Saves Knees
After having knee surgery to stitch up a tear in his meniscus, Caleb Howerton, Springfield, Mo., knew he needed a way to hold his Idaho Pasture Pig piglets while castrating them that did not involve squatting or kneeling. After looking at several different styles of castrator boxes online, he came up with his own design using various parts he had laying around.
  To build it, he used some scrap 2 by 6, 2 by 4, and 2 by 2 boards along with a piece of ˝-in. pvc pipe, a heavy-duty half gallon plastic nursery pot, electrical tape, and a piece of fence wire. The base of the unit is 8 ˝ in. wide by 16 ˝ in. long and easy to move around the farm. Next, he took the plastic pot and cut off the base, then cut it lengthwise and taped it into a cone shape with about a 1 ˝-in. hole at one end, and a 4-in. opening at the other. He fastened this with a screw and fencing staples to the base, making a cone where the piglet’s head rests during the castration process to keep them calm. On the back of the castration station, Howerton attached two “arms” made of 1-ft. long 2 by 2 boards with a screw loose enough to allow them to freely pivot, and drilled several holes to slide in a small pvc pipe restraining bar in place. Having several sizing options allows him to adjust it for the size of the piglet he is castrating (up to 25 lbs.). A piece of fencing wire attaches to the pipe and once the piglet is laying in the castration station on its back, the pvc restraining bar goes down over the piglet’s rear legs and the wire wraps around a screw at the top of the castrator unit to keep it secure during the process.
  The whole process takes less than a minute, keeps the piglets calm and relatively quiet, only requires one person, and thanks to a portable Workmate table set at a convenient height, there is no bending or squatting awkwardly and no unnecessary strain on the knees or back. Since Caleb keeps the castration station attached to the Workmate table, he can simply fold up and store the unit without any hassle.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Caleb Howerton, Green Thicket Farm, 1008 E. Farm Rd. 54, Springfield, Mo, 65803 (greenthicketfarm@gmail.com)

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2020 - Volume #44, Issue #1