Taking part in a 4-H Livestock Project can be exciting and rewarding experience. Through the swine project you are given the opportunity to learn about taking care of an animal, working with other young people, and developing sound judgment skills. When beginning with any new project or activity it is a learning experience for all involved. More knowledge is gained by taking part than by watching others.
Below are the most important aspects that you should know about your project animal to make your learning experience complete. These items will expand your knowledge above the five and sixe year old level into more challenging areas.
- Basic information from Swine Exhibitor's Project Guide (5-6 Years of Age)
- Differences between concentrates (energy and protein)
- Products produced: cuts of pork - ham, pork chop, tenderloin, bacon, etc.
- Monogastric digestive system with its single stomach
- Physical strengths and weaknesses of your exhibit animal
- Species terminology
- Boar - male
- Sow - female
- Barrow - castrated male
- Gilt - immature female
- Neck / Jowl
- Ear notcher
- Needle teeth clippers
- Ear tagger
Showmanship provides the opportunity to show an animal to the best of your ability. You are judged on how well you show your animal. Judging for showmanship does not include the conformation of the animal. Practice and planning will help you improve your showmanship skills. The Swine Showmanship factsheet offers more in-depth coverage of showmanship styles and care of the project animal.
Below are the showmanship standards for 7 and 8 year old youth. These standards are established to provide youth with guidelines of the more important aspects of developing showmanship skills.
Showmanship Skills to Develop
- Be able to perform all the tasks required for the 5-6 year olds (Swine Exhibitor's Project Guide (5-6 Years of Age))
- Control animal with proper technique.
- Ability to display your animal so that the judge has the best view of the animal at all times.
- Be aware of the surroundings and show process. Watch the judge, your animal, and the other exhibitors.
- Be courteous and helpful to the other exhibitors.
- Answer age-appropriate questions.
Description of Group Ribbon Colors
Purple: Far exceeds established showmanship standards
Blue: Exceeds established showmanship standards
Red: Meets established showmanship stanards
White: Does not meet established showmanship standards
Special acknowledgment is extended to the following individuals for their valuable contribution to the development of this educational material. Frank Bolick, Watauga County; J.D. Brooks, Buncombe; Kathy Bunton, Alexander County; Walter Earle, Wilson County; Michael Hobbs, Buncombe County; Brinton Hopkins, PhD, Department of Animal Science; Ronald Huges, Johnson County; Kenneth Vaughn, Iredell County.
Publication date: Feb. 1, 2003
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