It might be hard to picture presence of wild boars (Sus scrofa) in a highly urbanized city such as Hong Kong. However, wild boars are more commonly found in crowded urban areas according to news and reports received by HK AFCD (Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department) in recent years (see picture). Not all human and wild boar interactions are peaceful and positive in these incidences. Injuries of human or the animal are frequently seen. As a result, wild boars are often phrased as a “problem” that needs a solution.
A wild pig digging into a garbage bag on the roadside.
Our Hong Kong Wild Boar Project raises from observing this increasing news concerning the wild boar “problem”. As researchers, we naturally start to question what the problem really is (or is there really a problem), what the causes are, and what potential solutions are if needed. Our project has just started but from merely looking at wild boar related news, we already see some interesting patterns. For example, both English and Chinese news report much more on incidences happened in city centre or special locations such as airport or police station. As such, the wild boar “problem” is mostly associated with urbanized areas and conflicts between pigs and urban dwellers. However, is this really the case? How about areas with incidences but neglected by news media? Is there still a “problem”? Stay tuned and our research will help to provide answers to these questions.