Farmscape for March 24, 2022
The General Manager of Sask Pork says the public has a vital role to play in helping bring wild boar and other feral pig populations under control.
The Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture has introduced enhanced measures to control feral pigs, including a moratorium on new commercial wild boar farms, licensing regulations for existing farms and enhanced surveillance and control.
Mark Ferguson, the General Manager of the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board, notes sightings can be reported to Sask Pork's PIG-SPOT hotline.
Clip-Mark Ferguson-Saskatchewan Pork Development Board:
The Ministry of Agriculture has a surveillance program that they've been doing.
Basically, when there are sightings, they will go out and follow up on the sightings, they'll collaborate with Crop Insurance to basically have people on the ground go out and verify that they are there.
Under the eradication program, if there are wild boar there, they remove them with trapping techniques.
In terms of Sask Pork our contribution has been to help collect sightings.
We operate a 1-800 hotline, 1-833-PIG-SPOT is the phone number people can call if they do have a sighting.
The most important and the biggest contribution the public can make is to report any sightings of wild boar that they do see.
When there's enough sightings in an area, where there's smoke there's fire.
It really helps us and the provincial government to understand where they are and properly allocate the resources to remove them.
In terms of the public the biggest thing you can do is report them if you do see them or if you are aware of them.
The other message to the public is, please don't hunt the animals.
Removing only one or two animals from a group only makes the problem worse and disperses the group into new areas.
It's vitally important.
This is where we need the public's assistance, is in locating new groups of wild boar if they are present in your municipality.
Ferguson notes wild boar are an invasive species with a great ability to reproduce, they damage crop and pastureland, eat crop and they can act as a reservoir for diseases, such as African Swine Fever, that affect domestic swine.
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