Long, long ago, well actually not that long ago, more like the 80’s/90’s wild boars began making the journey across the ocean from Europe to live on Canadian farms. They may have appeared to be just happy little piggy’s, but they actually were smart little escape artists! So, yup, you guessed it the wild boars began digging under fences or even just running through them to get out. Others were patient and waited for the meat markets to close so they could be set free to roam the Canadian lands.
What harm could a few free roaming boars cause, right? Well, many thought they would never survive the freezing Canadian winters, but these boars proved to be hardier and smarter than they first looked. Now, they are acting like their cheeky little selves causing mischief wherever they go!
Somewhere on the path of destruction feral swine were born, which are a mixed breed of a wild boar and a domestic pig. These feral swine can now be found roaming from British Columbia to Manitoba and even a little further if they are adventurous. But how much damage can a cute pig cause? The answer is A LOT!!!! They plow through crops both trampling them and snacking on everything they see, cause grassland damage and stream beds to erode, displace wildlife with their presence as well as harass livestock still living on farms. So, to say the least they are not the most pleasant guests.
Once only known to roam the prairies these hogs somehow multiplied drastically populating much of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and even the east coast of Quebec. They must have hired some sort of help to get there! You would know if you saw one because they grow to be approximately 600 pounds. Of course, their size and amount of fat reserve help them survive the winter and it also plays in their favour when coming across a predator. Feral swine have large sharp tusks on either side of their nose and are coated in a thick, warm bristle coat. These creatures have wonderfully been dubbed “Super Pigs”.
Just wait there is more! Not only are they considered to be “Super Pigs” they also are known to build above ground shelters named, pause for dramatic effect, Pigloos!!! I don’t know about you, but I am on the search to see a pigloo in person, however, they are apparently really hard to track down. The wild hogs cut down cattails with their teeth and use them to line the insides of their pigloos as well as make beds. Although they are very large and not considered dainty wild swine are shy and don’t like to be seen. People who have spotted these funny creatures say their paths resemble that of a backhoe going through a pasture.
Keep your eyes peeled for these smart, tough, tremendously huge piggy’s cuddling in their pigloos next time you are in the great Canadian wild!!!