Australian Animals of the Outback: Another Imported Pest

We have a lot of strange and unusual creatures in the Australian outback, and I’ve written about quite a few. We’ve got…

So, what else have we got out there?

Feral pigs!

Dingoes aside, if you’ve read my articles mentioned above and the ones about rabbits, cane toads and fire ants, this is a story you’ve heard so many times before.

Feral pigPigs were imported into Australia and, as they are sometimes known as “Captain Cookers’, there are no prizes for guessing who brought them here.

They escaped, went wild, and like all the other imported species, they really flourished in the Australian environment. What makes this so surprising though, is pigs do not like the heat. If they are not in the shade they can die in about six hours without water in anything above 30° C.

Nobody knows how many feral pigs we have in Australia, but their population could be as high as 23.5 million! If that’s true, they outnumber all us peeps!

That said, there may be as few as 3 million, but whatever their number, they caused huge environmental damage and no end of problems to farmers. They are another imported Australian pest and as such are fair game for Australian hunters.

Here’s a fascinating video about our feral pigs in Australia…

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{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Kamma March 29, 2014, 1:55 am | Link

    How come that Australia, the poster child for the “everything trying to kill you” trope, is so easily ravaged by animals that have all of squat adaptation to it?

    • BobinOz March 31, 2014, 1:41 pm | Link

      That’s an interesting question, wish I knew the answer. But it does seem that when ever some kind of imported animal moves here, they seem to flourish in our environment to the detriment of our native species. Maybe it’s just natures way of saying “don’t mess with the ecosystem”.

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