Pigs & Warthogs

Red River Hoglets at Howletts!


On May 3, 2011, Howletts Wild Animal Park in Canterbury, England welcomed the birth of two baby Red River Hogs.The Red River Hog, or bush pig, is widely distributed throughout sub-Saharan Africa and Madagascar, across forests, mountains and grasslands. These pigs are social animals, often living in small groups called "drifts" or herds.



Most active at night, Red River Hogs have made enemies with some farmers by raiding crops. They are hunted for this reason, as well as for meat. While they are not at high risk, there are very few in zoos, so these babies offer a rare opportunity to appreciate this strong, intelligent and adapatable animal. With its reddish coat and patterned face, it is probably the most attractive-looking of wild pigs.

Photo credits: Shelly Ansell

Four Little Hoglets!


The first-ever Red River Hoglets born at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo are healthy, growing, and spending their days learning how to root and wallow, as every good hog should know how to do. The pair, a boy and a girl, was born the morning of March 23, and can now be seen on exhibit in African Rift Valley on sunny days when the temperature reaches at least 50 to 60 degrees. The hoglets weigh in at a little over two pounds and are already devouring fresh vegetables, along with their mother’s milk.



Photo credits: Tracey Gazibara, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

Video credits: Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

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Four Formosan Hoglets in Taipei

Formosan Wild Boar hoglets at Taipei Zoo 1

On February 10 Taiwan's Taipei Zoo welcomed four little Formosan Wild Boar hoglets. This subspecies of boar is native only to Taiwan. The little boars were born as part of a Taipei Zoo conseration program to protect the species, which has become increasingly rare as farmers allow their domestic pigs to roam free and interbreed with Formosan Boars. Zookeeper Chen Yan He, the Zoo's unofficial "pig nanny," has worked with a variety of pigs and boars in the past but says that the Formosan Boars are among the most gentle.

Formosan Wild Boar hoglets at Taipei Zoo 2a

Formosan Wild Boar hoglets at Taipei Zoo 3

Formosan Wild Boar hoglets at Taipei Zoo 2bPhoto credits: Taipei Zoo

Little Peccary Piglets in Los Angeles

On August 23, the Los Angeles Zoo welcomed two Chacoan Peccary piglets. This relative of the pig is native to Bolivia, Argentina and Paraguay. They were thought to be extinct until 1972 when biologists found the species hidden away in a secluded section of Paraguay. 

Baby peccary piglets los angeles zoo 1b

Baby peccary piglets los angeles zoo 1b

Baby peccary piglets los angeles zoo 1b
Photo credits: Tad Motoyama / Los Angeles Zoo

In the wild, low growing species of cactus make up most of the peccary’s diet.  Like hogs, peccaries have a well-developed snout used to root out bulbs, roots, tubers and rhizomes of a variety of plants. Unlike the domestic pig, the peccary is a slow and dainty eater; they do not devour their food rapidly.

Forget Jon and Kate: Hamton the Pig Plus Fourteen Piglets!

Hamton the pig had a busy spring at Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo, cozying up with not one but two charming Guinea Hog sows, Jodie and Olivia. This past week, both sows gave birth to big litters, eight and six respectively, making Hamton the proud father of fourteen little piglets! Guinea Hogs are a domestic breed that was once the most prevalent in the American Southeast, but today their are only about 200 individuals left.

Connecticuts beardsley zoo baby guinea hog pigs 1

Connecticuts beardsley zoo baby guinea hog pigs 4

Connecticuts beardsley zoo baby guinea hog pigs 3

Connecticuts beardsley zoo baby guinea hog pigs 2Photo credits: Shannon Calvert

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Three Little Pigs

If you had to give out an award for the prettiest of all pigs, the Red River Hog would be a top contender. While the little hoglets don't have the orange-red fur of their parents, they do sport fashion forward camouflage stripes. These three little pigs were born at the LA Zoo at the end of May. Definitely worth a visit if you live in the area. On a sidenote, I think the music in the video is perfectly suited for piggy adventuring.

Red river hogs la zoo 2

Red river hoglets la zoo 1Photo credits: Tad Motoyama / LA Zoo

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