Duroc Pig: Facts & Characteristics
Until 1940, Duroc was known by the name of Duroc-Jersey. Perhaps, because it had its origin in the United States by crossing two pig lines – the red Jersey of New Jersey and the Duroc of New York. The former were large, prolific animals with a long body and enormous weight, and the latter were smaller, compact and suitable for baiting.
The breed has made a niche for itself due to its good qualities of both growth and quality of the meat since it is semi-fat. In reproductive parameters, it can be compared to Large White and Landrace, although it is a little lower. It is commonly used as a paternal line, both in two-way and three-way crosses.
Physical Features of Duroc
The color of Duroc breed presents a remarkable variation, ranging from a light, almost yellow, to a very dark red. The color, by itself, does not have any relation with the production capacity of the pigs, but there seems to be a greater preference for the lines that exhibit the dark red color.
It possesses a medium body length.
The ears are hanging and do not stand erect.
The head is small in relation to body size, wide between the eyes, slightly concave forehead, short and tapered muzzle, somewhat wide and raised muzzle.
The ears are medium-sized, fine, pointed, directed forward and upward with the tips bent downward.
The neck is short, deep and slightly arched. The dewlap is small and fine. The trunk is of medium length, deep and arched. The dorsolumbar line describes a convex line, being able to be straight in highly conformed animals, especially if they are young, with a long and moderately wide back.
Wide back, well developed and with correct union with the trunk. Loin is a convex, broad, long, very muscular and more prominent at the midpoint of its length.
The ribs are long and deep, a tucked belly with a straight lower line and a minimum of twelve normal teats placed regularly.
Possesses a loping, broad rump and broad ham.
The limbs are long, moderately fine and straight. Short, straight pasterns and strong hooves.
Productive Characteristics of Duroc Pigs
Highly prolific and an efficient utilizer of feed. Can have an average of 15 piglets per litter.
Fast growth and the sow matures early.
Mature boar’s body weight is 400 kg on average while an mature sow’s weight is 350 kg on average.
Excellent carcass quality with tasteful meat.
Excellent mothering ability.
Resistant to diseases and hot climates.