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Predatory Behavior in Suids; originally posted by Hyaenidae
Topic Started: Jan 9 2012, 06:55 PM (2,663 Views)
Taipan
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This is a topic I've been interested in for a while. Suids and entelodonts were my favorite animals up until a few years ago and I found it fascinating to read about ungulates that eat meat.

On this forum (and in general), pigs are usually referred to as being herbivores or prey animals but there are cases of them taking on the role of opportunistic predator from time to time. I'm sure everyone knows that they are successful scavengers, but here are a few testaments to their occasional predatory forays.


In New South Wales:

[blockquote]"Pigs were shown to be predators of lambs. Pig activity caused some disturbance to the flock on 77.5% of the observed occasions they were within 100 m of lambing flocks. Lambs were caught in 10 of 42 (23.8%) of observed chases. The feeding sequence on lambs by feral pigs follows a distinct pattern, and carcasses left at different stages of consumption can implicate feral pigs. Pigs were seen to kill one or two lambs in an evening but it is unknown how many lambs one pig may kill during an entire lambing. One individually identifiable pig was seen to kill five times, and harass the flock for up to 2 h, on seven different occasions during the spring 1978 lambing. Both boars and sows were seen to kill lambs."[/blockquote]


In Queensland:

[blockquote]"A predatory pig will approach a lambing flock and then, once close, rush a young lamb to knock it off balance. It will then put a forefoot on the lamb and start eating the chest region. When lambs killed by pigs have been examined, they have blood-stained belly wool, indicating haemorrhage from this area while the animal was alive. Feral pigs have a characteristic pattern of feeding on lambs that distinguishes them from other predators. For example, pigs sometimes trample lambs when eating them, while predation by dogs or foxes is distinguished by tooth marks either side of the area bitten."[/blockquote]


On farm pigs:

[blockquote]"There's not much you can do to stop pigs from eating meat, even if you give them a vegetarian diet. If a chicken goes into the pig area, looking for some feed, the pigs may catch it and eat it. There will be a feeding frenzy if one catches a chicken. Often there's no trace - the pigs just vacuum it up. It is horrific to see the pigs do that; they seem like such dinosaurs."[/blockquote]


In Missouri:

[blockquote]"Hogs have a keen sense of smell and are opportunistic feeders. They forage heavily on acorns, competing with native species such as deer and turkeys for this important fall food. They commonly eat the eggs of ground-nesting birds and have been reported to kill and eat fawns."[/blockquote]


In Wisconsin:

[blockquote]"[...] insects, crayfish, frogs, salamanders, snakes, mice, eggs of ground-nesting birds, young rabbits, fawns and young livestock, such as lambs, calves, kids. They can also kill larger livestock that are weak from illness or injury."[/blockquote]



Wild boars are also known to be cannibalistic:

[flash=350,350]hz9MHykiROI[/flash]

In this particular case, I'm unsure if it is merely a case of scavenging though.



As everyone knows, there are plenty of videos and cases of boars and other wild and feral pigs scavenging on large carcasses, even acting as kleptoparasites (giant forest hogs have been known to usurp carcasses from spotted hyenas). They are known for eating bones and leaving virtually no evidence behind - I've even heard mafia bosses would starve some pigs for a few days and feed them the bodies of their victims in order to hide any and all traces of their existence.

While it's clear that they can attack and consume young or smaller animals, what I really want to see is an account of a single or group of wild boar (or any other suid) preying on an adult animal of decent size. Does anyone have any instances of this happening, or any other accounts of predatory pigs?
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GreenDragon
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I have heard of medieval tales of men being killed and eaten by herds of boar. Also the stories of farmers eaten by domestic pigs they were feeding.

Here is an actual case of a herd of pigs who ate an Indian boy.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/6195860.stm

Quote:
 
Delhi boy eaten by herd of pigs

A three-year-old boy has been eaten alive by a neighbour's herd of pigs on the outskirts of the Indian capital, Delhi, police say.

The boy, Ajay, strayed from the family home as his parents and other family members were having lunch.

When his mother went to look for him, she found the pigs chewing something and spotted bits of her son's clothing.

She threw stones at the animals but they turned on her. Her screams alerted neighbours who came to her rescue.

'Playing'

Relatives in the village of Samaipur Badli in north-west Delhi told police the boy had been carrying bread, which might have led the animals to attack him.

A senior police official, Manish Aggarwal, said a local man who owned the pigs had been detained for causing death due to negligence.

"Three children were playing outside their house when the incident took place," Mr Aggarwal told the BBC.

"The victim, Ajay, strayed from the area but his parents or relatives were not there to save him since they were having lunch inside their house."
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Canidae
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For what it's worth - not neccesarily predatory behaviour - Eurasian Boar will kleptoparasite Eurasian Lynx kills and and Indian ones will with Leopards too; they have also been reported to corner, attack and even kill adult Leopards - shall try to find more on all accounts. ^
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Icestorm
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I'm not too surprised by it. Isn't the driving force behind evolutionary changes really exploring new behavioral tendencies rather than being blessed with a beneficial mutation?
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ManEater
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Canidae
Mar 26 2012, 07:18 AM
For what it's worth - not neccesarily predatory behaviour - Eurasian Boar will kleptoparasite Eurasian Lynx kills and and Indian ones will with Leopards too; they have also been reported to corner, attack and even kill adult Leopards - shall try to find more on all accounts. ^
Indian boars who steal the prey of leopard , give accounts please .
And the same for eurasian lynx with eurasian boar , i am surprised .
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Canidae
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ManEater
Mar 26 2012, 05:16 PM
Canidae
Mar 26 2012, 07:18 AM
For what it's worth - not neccesarily predatory behaviour - Eurasian Boar will kleptoparasite Eurasian Lynx kills and and Indian ones will with Leopards too; they have also been reported to corner, attack and even kill adult Leopards - shall try to find more on all accounts. ^
Indian boars who steal the prey of leopard , give accounts please .
And the same for eurasian lynx with eurasian boar , i am surprised .
Watch the documentary 'Night Stalkers' and there is an episode on Leopards in Sri Lanka where Boars steal a Leopard kill.
Here is a boar herd killing a Leopard in retaliation :
"MYSORE: In a rare event of counter-attack and the hunter becoming the hunted, a herd of wild boars cornered a marauding female leopard and mauled her to death in the D.B. Kuppe range of the Nagarahole National Park on Friday night.

The leopard stalked a solitary wild boar for a considerable length of time and attacked her and grabbed her by the neck.

The prey kicked up dust and its shriek attracted other wild boars that were nearby which mustered courage and launched a counter-attack and inflicted serious wound on the leopard killing it on the spot.

The carcasses of both the animals were found by the personnel of the Department of Forests on Saturday.
"
http://www.hindu.com/2006/09/10/stories/2006091008530300.htm

Also this great piece of film, not a kill but some serious pig power! :


With the Lynx I could find much but a mention here under the Ungulate Mortalities heading : "Poland Lynx were frequentley displaced by scavengers, especially by Wild Boar, which forced the Lynx to kill more frequently. "
http://www.wildlifebiology.com/Downloads/Article/364/en/oldpath.pdf
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ManEater
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Thanks for the info , i will try to find the documentary "night stalker" .
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Madmustelid
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I've read stories about Wild Boars/Feral pigs eating up dogs that strayed away from their owners in the forest.
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Rashido
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Entelodonts will rise again!
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Full Throttle
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Pigs on a farm we used to keep our horse on ate rats, mice, chicken eggs and bacon and sausage.
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Peregrine
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Taipan
Jan 9 2012, 06:55 PM
Lambs were caught in 10 of 42 (23.8%) of observed chases.
Extra high success rate for ungulate.
However, this is success rate in attack on very small lambs, newborn almost, how i understood.
Average success rate of pig may be much smalller.
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Ceratodromeus
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warthog kills young impala
Posted Image
"On an afternoon drive in central Kafue National Park in Zambia, we witnessed the most unexpected and, as far as we know, photographically undocumented, sighting.
We had just had the first brief storm of the season and the wildlife was noticeably excited and full of energy, with young animals running around merrily and the migratory birds in their hundreds picking off the newly hatching ants and termites.
Posted Image
As we rounded a bend in a very attractive stretch of miombo woodland, our guide Tyrone heard the frantic alarm calls of a herd of impala. Putting his binoculars to his eyes, he shouted: “Let’s go!”
As we moved further along the track to get a better look at what was causing the commotion, he explained that he had seen a grey shape tussling with what looked to be an young impala. Tyrone assumed that it was a baboon snatching an easy kill, as this sometimes happens at this time of year.
However, what we found was not a baboon, but a lone warthog that was in a frantic state. We watched as a young impala was attacked and gored to death by the warthog before our very eyes.
In what seemed to be a fit of rage, the warthog would tusk, stab and throw the kicking body of the impala around the woodland, while the mother of the baby was alarm calling and frantically running to and fro in an attempt to distract the killer warthog.

Tyrone explained that it was not wholly uncommon to find warthog (and a number of other unexpected species) feeding on carcasses or carrion at this time of year – the end of the dry season when wildlife is a little more stressed, and certain minerals and salts may not be as readily available in the bush. But to witness a warthog actively catch, kill and consume a baby impala was something that was very hard to explain. One wonders how often this may actually happen, going unseen.
Posted Image
We did feel sorry for the impala mother – who needs enemies when you’ve got friends like the warthog?
http://africageographic.com/blog/a-warthog-kills-an-impala/




very cool video showing a warthog around and feeding on a zebra carcass

"In late July 2015 several animals died from lack of grazing in a small wildlife reserve to the north of where we live on the edge of Kruger National Park in Hoedspruit, South Africa. The carcasses of a young zebra and an adult impala were taken to the local veterinarian for testing, and once declared disease free, we offered to have them placed in front of our deck so that we could observe and photograph/film all activities. The zebra carcass was opened up to allow easy access, and by late afternoon several vultures had appeared in the surrounding trees.

Early the next morning there were around 100 vultures present but none had come down to the carcasses. Various small mammals including a black-backed jackal and a slender mongoose came to investigate and do some quick, rather nervous feeding.

Then a warthog family arrived and immediately tucked in, ripping off chunks of meat as they fed. They remained for nearly an hour, then slowly the more adventurous vultures descended to the ground, tentatively approaching while the warthogs were feeding. Once the first vulture took a bite, the rest poured to the ground and within 30 minutes both carcasses had been stripped of meat

Various warthog individuals and family groups came to investigate the remains during the day, some nibbling at the bones, others simply looking and then moving off. Over the weeks the original warthog family returned at regular intervals to chew on the bones, now completely dried out. There were still a few bones remaining even in early December, and every now and then the warthogs came round to chew again, competing with several giraffe who also made use of the bones to supplement their calcium requirements.
http://africageographic.com/blog/video-hungry-warthog-eats-zebra/#sthash.qHGLcSmR.dpuf
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Thalanx
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Quote:
 
New Zealand has no native pigs. The earliest pigs to be introduced were the fat, black kunekune and the larger Captain Cooker, which destroyed crops, lambs and the habitats of native animals.


http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/pigs-and-the-pork-industry

Quote:
 
Although the full extent to which feral pigs are damaging the New Zealand environment is unclear, pig rooting has the potential to impact long-term ecosystem processes such as nutrient cycling and the composition of plant species in forests. Feral pigs are also a significant predator of New Zealand’s native land snails (Powelliphanta spp.), earthworms can comprise a significant proportion of feral pig diet (from 10-26% dry weight), and it is believed that control of pigs is critical for the long-term survival of mainland populations of the threatened carabid Megadromus speciosus. Pigs also eat other native wildlife, such as ground nesting birds and their eggs, and lizards and frogs, although adverse effects have not been well quantified in New Zealand. In the U.S.A they have been identified as a predator of lizards and amphibians.


http://www.pestdetective.org.nz/culprits/pig/
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Ausar
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I have a (somewhat off topic) question. Is it true that suids (including warthogs) don't use their upper tusks for attacking, but rather for ornamental purposes and for sharpening the lower tusks? I read this a couple times on the forum, but the picture of the warthog holding the impala by the mouth looks like it has blood on its upper tusks.
Edited by Ausar, Dec 18 2016, 11:50 PM.
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Grazier
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Ausar
Dec 18 2016, 11:50 PM
I have a (somewhat off topic) question. Is it true that suids (including warthogs) don't use their upper tusks for attacking, but rather for ornamental purposes and for sharpening the lower tusks? I read this a couple times on the forum, but the picture of the warthog holding the impala by the mouth looks like it has blood on its upper tusks.
Yes the top tusks sharpen the lower tusks, which are a lot sharper. In warthogs the upper tusks also serve as a barricade for when they back into holes, which is, uniquely in the suid world, their natural defense - Sprint to the nearest hole and back in. For this reason they have the big upper tusks and they're a lot faster than other suids too.

Having said all that, the top tusks can of course cause damage in the ruckus, and can definitely get blood on them if a bleeding gazelle carcass sits on them. Any and all damage they can dish out is welcomed, but they actively kill with their razor sharp lower tusks.
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