Visayan warty pig

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Visayan warty pig
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Class:Mammalia
Order:Artiodactyla
Family:Suidae
Subfamily:Suinae
Genus:Sus
Species:S. cebifrons
Binomial name
Sus cebifrons
Linnaeus, 1758
 
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Visayan warty pig
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Class:Mammalia
Order:Artiodactyla
Family:Suidae
Subfamily:Suinae
Genus:Sus
Species:S. cebifrons
Binomial name
Sus cebifrons
Linnaeus, 1758

The Visayan warty pig, Sus cebifrons, is a critically endangered species of pig. The Visayan warty pig is endemic to two of the Visayan Islands in the central Philippines, and is threatened by habitat loss, food shortages and hunting – these are the leading causes of the Visayan warty pig's status as critically endangered. Due to the small numbers of remaining Visayan warty pigs in the wild, little is known of their behaviors or characteristics outside of captivity.

Subspecies[edit]

Although it is believed that S. cebifrons can now only be found in Negros and Panay, some studies report of the possibility that a small population exists on the island of Masbate.

Distribution[edit]

The Visayan warty pig is endemic to six islands in the Philippines. It is now extinct on four of the islands. It is endangered because Filipino natives captured them and use them for resources, such as food and using its skin for fur.

Physical characteristics[edit]

The Visayan warty pig receives its name from the three pairs of fleshy "warts" present on the visage of the boar. Biologists speculate that the reason for the warts is to assist as a natural defense against the tusks of rival pigs during a fight. The boars also grow stiff spikey hair.

Habitat and diet[edit]

Visayan warty pigs tend to live in groups of four to six. The diet of the pig mainly consists of roots, tubers, and fruits that can be found in the forest. They may also eat cultivated crops. Since approximately 95% of their natural habitat has been cleared by local farmers who cut down the forest to plant crops, the propensity of the pigs to eat cultivated crops has risen dramatically. Because the land that is cleared for farming is often unproductive after a few years, the food sources of the Visayan warty pig are extremely limited, a factor that has contributed significantly to the pig’s dwindling numbers.

Reproduction[edit]

Visayan Warty Pig piglets, Sus cebifrons.

Visayan warty pig piglets are often seen during the dry season between the months of January and March in their native habitat of the western Visayan Islands. The mean number of piglets is three to four per litter.

Captive status[edit]

In addition to a few other conservation programs in the Philippines, the Crocolandia Foundation and the Negros Forests and Ecological Foundation, Inc., both have this species in captivity. In Europe, nine zoos – the Rotterdam Zoo, Poznan Zoo, Chester Zoo, Belfast Zoo, Edinburgh Zoo, Blackbrook Zoological Park, Děčín Zoo, the Newquay Zoo and the Parken Zoo in Eskilstuna – maintain the Negros Island variety of this species. Moreover, several zoos in the United States also maintain this species. The San Diego Zoo was the first zoo outside the Philippines to keep and breed Visayan Warty Pigs. Elsewhere in North America, zoos in Los Angeles, Portland, Phoenix, Miami, Tampa, Saint Louis, Brevard Zoo, and Boise have also kept the species.

See also[edit]

References and external links[edit]

  1. ^ Oliver, W. (2008). Sus cebifrons. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 5 April 2009. Database entry includes a brief justification of why this species is of critically endangered.