Considering most of the Japanese people living within a 20 to 30 kilometer area around the Fukushima “nuclear” reactors have evacuated, this leaves the region void of people but not wild boars (feral hogs). An article was published the other day suggesting the large increase in wild boar populations around Fukushima was somehow related to radioactive contamination. Since I don’t think radioactive contamination is what is going on around Fukushima, the large increase in wild boar population is the result of a 20 to 30 kilometer circular area out to 60 kilometers or more around Fukushima that has been converted into a wild life refuge for feral hogs. The hogs have no predators and they are free to roam all over the region devastating local farms.
Wild hogs will breed year round, but births peak in spring and fall. Female boar gestation is 114 days, and a sow will give birth to anywhere from one to a dozen piglets. The female sow can have two litters a year and considering a “refuge” of sorts has been created around Fukushima, there is nothing stopping female sows from having two litters a year for potentially 24 piglets. After doing some checking around, female feral hogs can reach sexual maturity as young as 3-4 months of age; however, most wild sows reach sexual maturity by the time they are one year old. Male boars will mate at any opportunity they can which are capable of sex as young as 3-4 months, often impregnating several sows within a very short period of time. Is it any wonder under these conditions in Fukushima that wild boar populations are soaring?
The increase in wild boar populations around Fukushima have destroyed an estimated $15 million in farm produced food in the region and locals are in a quandary about how to reduce the wild boar population. The Japanese have organized big feral hog hunting parties, and from the report that was made available on the numbers taken, have gone from 3,000 hogs in 2011, to around 13,000 hogs in 2015. And even though the local government in the area has been offering rewards for killing boars, this has only a limited effect. As anyone would expect, because of limited space, after the boars have been killed, there is no where for the hogs to be buried. And because of fear of radioactive contamination, or so it is suggested, the hogs aren’t being eaten. Hundreds of houses and buildings in the region that have been abandoned make them perfect homes explaining a huge surge in the racoon population in the region. And as usual, British sources like the tabloid Mirror always quick to ramp up fear, uses the description “RADIOACTIVE” in its title on their article about feral pigs in Fukushima.
Let’s go wild boar hunting…
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