Hungarian mangalica

The Hungarian Mangalica is an extraordinary pig breed that is very popular among pig breeders. It has a great advantage over other breeds in the form of unpretentiousness to the conditions of detention and nutrition, as well as quick wit. Representatives of this breed become attached to their master. Outwardly, they resemble lambs due to the thick curls of wool. By their nature, they are compared to dogs, as they are really smart.

Origin of the species and description

Photo: Hungarian mangalica

Photo: Hungarian mangalica

The Hungarian mangalica has been known to pig breeders as pets for several centuries. This breed was first mentioned in 1833, when the Hungarian breeder Josef was able to cross a domestic and a wild pig for the first time. The result was a very interesting and most suitable offspring for breeding at home, which gave rise to a new breed of domestic pigs – the Hungarian Mangalica.

It was this breed that was distinguished by unpretentiousness to the conditions of detention, could eat pasture, like their wild ancestors, and at the same time gave tasty and very juicy meat. Another significant advantage that pigs were distinguished by was the ability to endure a cold climate and severe frosts in outdoor conditions.

Video: Hungarian mangalica

It should be noted that the breeder was a representative of a noble family and bore the title of Archduke. Other monasteries became interested in the result of his activities. After the breeding of these pigs, animal husbandry in the monasteries became very popular and successful. Without requiring any special efforts for breeding, the animals produced delicious meat and lard, which became very popular among famous chefs of that time.

Around 1900, Romanian and Ukrainian farmers became interested in the meat of these animals. Very quickly, this breed of pigs began to be bred in these countries. During this period of time, the animal population increased to almost 35,000 individuals. Farmers grazed them in the vast expanses of meadows, valleys and fields.

After the Second World War, the pig population was on the verge of extinction. In general, there are no more than 800 individuals left. This was due to the fact that these pigs were greasy, and at that time everyone tried to breed meat breeds of domestic animals. However, in Hungary they immediately began to save the endangered breed of pigs.

To this end, a special association for saving traditional pig breeding was even formed. This direction was supported by pig breeders from other countries. By joint efforts, the population of the Hungarian Mangalica was increased to 8,500 individuals.

Appearance and features

Photo: What a Hungarian mangalica looks like

Photo: How the Hungarian Mangalica looks like

Representatives of this breed have an unusual and very interesting appearance. They simply cannot be confused with any other breed. At first glance, it is not always possible to understand that we have a pig in front of us. The entire body of the animal is covered with thick, curly hair. In the cold season, a thick undercoat appears, thanks to which it is easier for animals to endure the harsh climate and cold.

Interesting fact. Breeders have found that if representatives of this breed are kept in a warm, dry barn, thick wool will simply fall out as unnecessary.

Possible color options for the Hungarian mangalica:

  • white;
  • black;
  • yellow;
  • brown-red;
  • mixed.

Black and brown-brown colors are almost never found. In this regard, at the moment, breeders are making a lot of efforts to increase the number of these individuals. The color scheme may vary depending on age, season and climatic conditions, and even on the type of food and type of soil where the animal is kept.

Another distinguishing feature of the representatives of this breed is forward-pointing ears and the presence of dark Wellmann spots on the lower margin. The size of this spot reaches 1.5-3 centimeters.

Features of the appearance of mangalics:

  • strong, elongated physique;
  • powerful, very strong skeleton;
  • drooping belly;
  • medium-sized stigma with a slightly upturned patch pointing upwards;
  • medium-sized ears covered with thick hair;
  • straight line of the back;
  • expressive eyes with thick long eyelashes;
  • thickened tail with a wool tassel at the end;
  • in purebreds pigs, regardless of coat color, the piglet is almost always black.

Where does the Hungarian Mangalica live?

Photo: Hungarian Downy Mangalica

Photo: Hungarian Downy Mangalica

Under natural conditions, the Hungarian mangalica is not found in nature. This is an exclusively domestic breed of pigs. For keeping and breeding at home, minimal conditions will be required. They do not require a shed or a heated room. Thanks to their thick wool with undercoat, animals tolerate cold and frost well.

Mandatory conditions for keeping animals:

  • free space. A prerequisite is the presence of a large free space. Ideally, provide walking pigs in the fields, meadows, valleys. If this is not possible, it is advisable to fence off an aviary with a net for animals, on which they can walk freely;
  • Plenty of hay. In the cold season, animals like to literally dig into the hay. Ideally, you need to take care of the presence of a pigsty along with an open pen;
  • a large amount of clean water. The Hungarian mangalitsa is very neat and clean, and therefore it needs water for bathing. In hot summer weather, she needs to cool off in the water.

When kept in open enclosures or pens, there must be a canopy under which you can hide from the scorching sun in the summer heat. If you neglect this requirement, the animal can become seriously ill. Thick wool makes pigs easily endure frost and cold, but the scorching sun and heat can cause overheating.

What does the Hungarian mangalica eat?

Photo: Hungarian Mangalica Pig

Photo: Hungarian Mangalica Pig

One of the main The advantages of this breed are undemanding in nutrition. It will not be difficult to feed pigs, as they easily gain body weight from simple pasture. Hay, wild-growing plant species, roots are used as feed.

In addition, you can use as a food base:

  • fresh vegetables and herbs: potatoes, swedes, beets, zucchini, etc.;
  • cereals and cereals. Mangalis are very fond of corn, as well as corn porridge;
  • bran, pulp;
  • food waste;
  • fruits, apples, pears;
  • shoots, roots and leafy parts of various types of vegetation, in particular, wild ones – oak, nettle, chestnut, etc.;
  • ready-made vitamin and dry feed mixtures designed specifically for pigs.

The favorite delicacy of animals are corn cobs. They enjoy eating weeds. In the process of grazing, they can eat frogs, snails, small lizards, and worms. A prerequisite for breeding pigs is the presence of a large amount of clean water in drinking bowls.

In the warm season, in many countries where Hungarian mangalits are bred, they are simply driven out to pasture, where they themselves nibble grass with pleasure almost all day long. Animals gain weight especially well when their diet is varied, balanced, enriched with vitamins and minerals. As food additives, it is required to periodically mix chalk or red clay into food in small quantities.

In no case should newborn piglets eat the food that adults feed on. Otherwise, they become lethargic, inactive, may get an upset digestive system, and may even die. Pigs that are 10-14 days old can be gradually introduced into the diet of roasted barley in combination with chalk and bone meal, as well as barley mash.

At the age of one month, compound feed is introduced into the diet, and at the age of one and a half months weaned from the mother and gradually expand the diet. It is believed that from the age of four months, piglets can already be fully transferred to an adult diet without any restrictions and prohibitions.

Peculiarities of character and lifestyle

Photo: Hungarian Mangalica Boar

Photo: Hungarian Mangalica Boar

By nature, Hungarian mangalitsy have a very calm disposition. They are quite smart and quick-witted, which is why they are often compared to dogs. Pigs really become attached to their master. They love space and freedom. To keep pigs at home, it is imperative to provide them with a spacious corral, or if it is possible to simply let them out for grazing in a field or meadow.

Pigs of this breed are distinguished by cleanliness. Therefore, it is imperative that they have access to clean water. Also be sure to keep the pen clean and change the bedding frequently. The Hungarian mangalica tolerates cold quite easily due to its warm curly coat. However, in winter they need a large amount of hay, in which pigs like to burrow.

The distinguishing features of the breed are unpretentiousness to the conditions of detention and nutrition. Animals are naturally endowed with stable, strong immunity. They are not prone to disease, but they need timely vaccination.

In summer, it is difficult for animals to withstand heat and heat, so they need a canopy to hide from the scorching sun and create shade. Hungarian mangalicas are not only resistant to diseases, but also have the ability to quickly adapt to the conditions of detention and changing climatic conditions.

Now you know how to keep the Hungarian mangalica. Let's see how to breed them properly.

Social structure and reproduction

Photo: Hungarian Mangalica Cub

Photo: Hungarian mangalica calf

Adults reach sexual maturity at around 8-9 months of age. Most often, the first birth of piglets will not be numerous. In general, breeders of this breed note that it is unusual for sows of this breed to give birth to a large number of piglets. Childbirth is usually easy, without complications. Piglets rarely die. No special measures are required for processing and cutting the umbilical cord.

An interesting fact. On average, one sow gives birth to 5-6 piglets. If 8 or more babies are born, this is an indicator that the sow is not a purebred.

The second and subsequent offspring are usually more numerous. The negative qualities of this breed are the low milk production of sows and low fertility.

Newborn piglets are born externally striped, which makes them look like wild pigs. Many farmers give iron injections to newborns to prevent iron deficiency anemia.

At the birth of piglets, it is extremely important to follow a diet for the first time. On the 5th-6th day, you can begin to gradually introduce complementary foods – roasted barley and liquid talker. At about the same time, it is necessary to break off the fangs of the piglets in order to prevent injury to the mother during feeding. Starting from the third, fourth week, they eat vegetables, corn cobs on their own.

By the end of the first month, the animals may be weaned from their mother. At this age, they can be sold, as they can eat the food that adults eat. The average duration of individuals that do not go to slaughter is about 20-23 years.

Natural enemies of the Hungarian mangalica

Photo: How the Hungarian Mangalica looks like

Photo: What the Hungarian Mangalica looks like

В due to the fact that pigs of the Hungarian mangalica breed live exclusively at home, they have no natural enemies. Due to the fact that more pigs were raised for the purpose of obtaining bacon or lard, in the post-war period in the late 40s and early 50s, their numbers decreased to catastrophically low numbers.

Representatives of this breed are distinguished by excellent immunity and good health. However, zoologists and veterinarians warn of the need for timely vaccination. Otherwise, there is a high probability of infection of animals with standard infectious diseases.

Possible diseases of the Hungarian mangalica

  • scabies;
  • lichen;
  • scabies;
  • ear and x-shaped mites

Another important nuance is the timely cleaning of the pig pen and the need for access to clean water. The absence of these conditions can provoke the development of diseases. Overheating during a hot period can cause lethargy, lack of appetite, and even death of the animal.

Veterinarians also recommend periodically deworming pigs. Pigs of various breeds are prone to helminth infections through food waste, worms, fish, frogs, etc. Another important criterion is to try to avoid drafts, dampness, and excessive moisture. Pigs can get pneumonia if indoor humidity exceeds 70%.

Population and species status

Photo: Hungarian mangalica

Photo: Hungarian mangalica

To date, the number of Hungarian mangalits does not cause any concern. Farmers from all over the world breed these extraordinary piglets. It is worth noting that animal meat is highly valued among culinary specialists due to its special qualities. The meat is distinguished by excellent taste and uniform fat layers.

Recently, the number of these animals has been growing in Ukraine, the Russian Federation, and Great Britain. In the historical homeland of the Hungarian mangalica – in Hungary, animals are considered a national treasure. On the territory of this state, a number of laws have been adopted, on the basis of which breeders of pigs are provided with assistance and benefits in breeding these animals.

According to preliminary estimates of breeders, the number of individuals of this breed exceeds 15,000. Animals are bred in various parts of the world. The exception is countries with a year-round hot climate.

Hungarian mangalica is a valuable breed of domestic pigs. Their meat has excellent taste and is highly valued by famous chefs from around the world.

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