As big fans of Charlotte's Web by E.B.White, we always name our pigs after characters from that beloved children's book. Over the years, we have had Wilbur (of course), Charlotte, Fern and Templeton. We also have an occasional Babe, another of our favorites!!!

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A female is called a sow.

A baby is a piglet.

A male is called a boar.

The name for a group of pigs depends on the animals' ages.

A group of young pigs is called a drift, drove or litter.

Groups of older pigs are called a sounder of swine.

Pigs originated in parts of Europe and Asia and were first domesticated in China about 9,000 years ago.

They were brought to America in the 1500s with Spanish explorers.

There are about 73 different breeds of pigs in the U.S.

The terms hog, swine, and pig are often used interchangeably for these animals.

Pigs have a great sense of smell, but poor eyesight.

Their thick but sensitive skin is partly covered with coarse bristles and exhibits a wide range of color patterns.

Pigs have a short gestation period of about 114 days and they produce large numbers of young each time they give birth, usually 6 to 12 piglets. Pigs grow very fast as well.

Pigs do not have functional sweat glands. They use water or mud for the purpose of staying cool in hot weather and protecting themselves from insect bites.. Pigs do not prefer to sit in mud. In fact, they prefer cleanliness much more than other animals.

Farmers feed pigs corn, wheat, oats and barley. They also like veggies, leftover bagels and birthday cake (but only as an occasional treat, of course)!

Pigs will go to the bathroom in one place which is well away from where they eat and drink.

Many experts consider pigs to be more trainable than dogs.

The scream of a frightened pig can measure 115 decibels, higher than the taking off noise of a jet engine (113 decibels).

Even though pigs have four toes on each hoof, they walk on only two of the toes. This makes them look as if they are tiptoeing.

There are 800 million pigs in the world. China has the most pigs in the world. In the United States, Iowa raises the most pigs---15 million.