Wildlife Research Wildlife Research Society
Ecology, management and conservation in natural and modified habitats
RESEARCH ARTICLE

The Behaviour of Feral Pigs, Sus scrofa, in Flocks of Lambing Ewes

PM Pavlov and J Hone

Australian Wildlife Research 9(1) 101 - 109
Published: 1982

Abstract

The behaviour of feral pigs in flocks of lambing ewes was studied in New South Wales during autumn and spring in both 1978 and 1979. Pigs were shown to be predators of lambs. Pig activity caused some disturbance to the flock on 77.5% of the observed occasions they were within 100 m of lambing flocks. Lambs were caught in 10 of 42 (23.8%) of observed chases. The feeding sequence on lambs by feral pigs follows a distinct pattern, and carcasses left at different stages of consumption can implicate feral pigs. Pigs were seen to kill one or two lambs in an evening but it is unknown how many lambs one pig may kill during an entire lambing. One individually identifiable pig was seen to kill five times, and harass the flock for up to 2 h, on seven different occasions during the spring 1978 lambing. Both boars and sows were seen to kill lambs.

https://doi.org/10.1071/WR9820101

© CSIRO 1982


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