Hybrid, larger, and hardier than typical domestic pigs are hittin’ the road and making their way down into the United States from Canada. These brainy and highly-resilient hogs were actually bred by Canadian farmers by setting up hot dates with domestic pigs and wild boars. Once they mated and created some spawn, the hybrid species was able to withstand the country’s freezing winter temperatures.
The idea worked — perhaps too well!
Now that the demand for the animals has dropped in the last 20 years, some farmers chose to release the pigs into the wild and they have been surviving there ever since. The only thing is that now they’re crossing territories and heading south. They’re wreaking havoc, so to speak, and making it hard for folks to “remove” them from their properties.
“Wild hogs feed on anything,” said Ryan Brook, leader of the University of Saskatchewan’s Canadian Wild Pig Research Project. “They gobble up tons and tons of goslings and ducklings in the spring.”
“They can take down a whitetail deer, even an adult. Originally, it was like ‘wow, this is something we can hunt.’ But it’s become clear that they’re threatening our whitetail deer, elk, and especially, waterfowl. Not to mention the crop damage. The downsides outweigh any benefit wild hogs may have as a huntable species.”
As things stand, the pigs have made it into North Dakota and over time, they are likely to multiply and spread across the mainland United States. Whether or not it will be possible to stop them remains unclear.
The super pigs have already traversed across the international border, dipping into at least North Dakota. So, expect an even greater occurrence as the hybrid population only grows. Like on public transit, if you see something, say something. The Squeal on Pigs website makes that even easier.
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