Fewer than 250 mature Bawean warty pigs in existence
|Female and male Bawean warty pig - image from camera trap |
[Credit: Bawean Endemics Conservation Initiative, BEKI]
According to the findings, the Bawean warty pig has a low population density compared to other pig species in Southeast Asia, with a total population of fewer than 250 mature individuals. This, along with its very limited range, suggests it should have at least an IUCN/SSC Red List status of Endangered. The authors also report that the pigs were mainly nocturnal and preferred to forage in community-owned forests and near forest borders, the former likely to contain energy-rich foods for the pigs, such as roots and tubers. This habitat preference makes them vulnerable to conflict with local communities.
Co-author Johanna Rode-Margono notes, "While females look very similar to wild boar the male Bawean warty pigs has three pairs of enormous warts on each side of its face. Only less than 250 mature animals occur on the island of Bawean, making them one of the rarest pig species on earth."
Further research is needed, but this systematic study of the Bawean warty pig may provide valuable initial information about its ecology and conservation needs.
Source: PLOS [April 06, 2016]