Wild Boar are considered the most dangerous animal in Florida’s Wildlife. The Wild Boar exceeds any other exotic including the pythons. You’ll see danger signs warning of Wild Boar to people, but no one is talking about how destructive they are to our lands. They can tear up millions of native land and trees a year.
The Wild Boar also knows as feral hogs or feral pigs in Florida are from three general types. One being the free-ranging swine that come from domesticated stock, the Eurasian wild boar, and hybrids of the two. You will not find any free-ranging pure Eurasian wild boar in Florida. What is found are feral domestic hogs and hybrids. The hybrids being a part domestic hog and Eurasian boar. They are in the Suidae (true pigs) family, which none are native to America.
The Wild Boar is now found in every county in Florida as well as 39 states and Canadian provinces. Texas is number one in Wild Boar population with an estimated 500,000. Florida comes in second with the highest densities nor and west of Lake Okeechobee many on private ranches. In the southeast, it is estimated that there are one to two million.
Breeding year-round, the births peak during fall and spring. Wild Boar sexually mature at six months, typically they do not breed until they are a year. Their pregnancy’s last about 115 days and will produce two litters a year. Each litter will have five to seven piglets. The piglets will remain nested for three weeks.
Wild Boar are opportunistic and omnivorous which leads to conflicts with people and wildlife. They prefer acorns which directly competes with many popular game animals including, deer, turkeys, and squirrels. In addition, they may consume the nests of young reptiles and ground-nesting birds and mammals. These include both turtles and deer fawns. Also, they have a history of preying on young domestic livestock including poultry, lambs, and goats.
Popular with hunters and an economic incentive for some landowners, they cause substantial damage to both agriculture, timber, and livestock. They are an import prey for the panther in South Florida. Due to their high reproductive rate and ability to adapt and survive, their numbers can be controlled, but not eliminated.