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Re: RC: In defense of pigs

In a message dated 12/09/1999 11:16:04 PM Pacific Standard Time, writes:

<< They are very social, creative, affectionate animals and don't deserve in 
 he least the bad rap people give them. They are considered dirty mostly 
because of the enviornment they are usually force=
 d to live in. Lester has no odor (never gets a bath, but he is also nuerted, 
boars can smell) fleas won't touch that roug=
 h skin and they are very hardy animals. No doubt in my mind they cause much 
damage to water sheds etc...But then we have =
 that same old question, if not native to the area, who brought them here? 
and if they are native, loss of habitat and pre=
 dators have upset the balance. Seems to a pretty common problem nowadays...I 
volunteer at at a PBP sanctuary (yes there a=
  quite a few of them due to the pot belly pig craze in the 80's) and some of 
the abuses inflicted on these animals are ho=
 rrific..blow torches, deformities from starvation, beatings me a 
bleeding heart if you will, but i also own 2 =
 slaughter bound horses, rescued dogs and Lester.
 Have to say though, Lester has won my heart like no other animal I've ever 
owned. Next time any of you are around a pig, =
 take a moment to look into their eyes, you can literaly see the intelligence 
looking back at you..... >>

Living in an area where wild pigs have been introduced (we first discovered 
them in August 1983), I have a number of comments:

1) Pigs may not have fleas, but they do have the most disgusting huge lice 
you ever saw! That also goes true for domestic ones, as our eldest daughter 
had a small herd of them when she was a 'teen and in the 4-H club.

2) Yes, they do great damage to watersheds, and pastures as well.  One large 
sow or boar  can spade up a good portion of an acre while looking for worms, 
beetles, clover, local truffles, mushrooms, wildflower bulbs, you name it 
.... they'll eat it.

3) I'm aware that they are very intelligent, but the truly wild ones can also 
be dangerous, as well as destructive.  I have no objections to the domestic 
ones, actually like them, but the so-called "Russian Boar" was never endemic 
to this area and haven't a very good control.  It's possible that coyotes or 
mountain lions take the young ... we have no knowledge or record of this.  I 
do know that a Border Collie or Australian Shepherd will attack and kill the 
young if encountered on the trail (our dogs).  My daughter's large, heavy 
Queensland Heeler attacked an adult pig on the trail at dusk and had his 
flank gored severely for his efforts. His misjudgement, the pig was only 
doing what comes naturally.

Considering the damage they do to the environment, I really would prefer not 
to have them around, and I'd cheerfully tar and feather the person(s) who 
allegedly introduced them into our forests so they would propagate and 
provide hunting game.

My opinion!

Barbara McCrary

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