Visayan Warty Pig
The Visayan Warty Pig, Sus cebifrons, is a critically endangered species of pig. It can only be found on two of the Visayan Islands in the central Philippines. It faces unique challenges for survival in the wild. The challenges include little room to escape from predators, food shortages and hunting. Due to the small numbers of remaining Visayan warty pigs in the wild, little is known of their behaviors or characteristics outside of captivity.
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 spiky hair. The 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.
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.