UPDATE: 14 Wild Boar Trapped in Pickering, Ontario

We here at Fish’n Canada have been closely following the Wild Boar sightings that have been reported in Pickering, Ontario – and it appears as though the hunt for the animals has finally come to an end.

After a near month-long chase, all 14 of the Pickering boar have been captured by the Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry. According to City News, the trapping process took multiple weeks, 11 of the boar being trapped early last week and the remaining 3 being captured just this Monday. Ministry representatives claim that peanut butter and marshmallow fluff sandwiches were the key to eventually luring in the boar.

Peanut butter and marshmallow sandwiches – the apparent key to catching Wild Boar

As is the case with all invasive species, the captured boar have all been euthanized and are currently being studied by the Ontario government to evaluate where they came from and the potential diseases they could be carrying. Officials were also quick to evaluate whether any of the sows were pregnant as breeding amongst these wild pigs could suggest that more animals are still on the loose. Thankfully, no wild reproduction has been reported.

The full statement from the Ministry can be found below:

In November, wildlife technicians in the Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry (NDMNRF) investigated reports of 14 wild pigs in the Pickering area.

Invasive wild pigs can have significant impacts on the natural environment and agricultural industry. They are considered one of the most damaging invasive species in the United States and have been called an ‘ecological train wreck’ due to trampling, wallowing, and rooting in sensitive habitats, and the significant damage they can cause to farmlands and stored crops. Wild pigs can also impact native plants and animals directly through predation and indirectly through competition for food and destruction of habitat. They can spread disease to native wildlife and livestock, such as African Swine Fever. Our goal is to reduce the disease risk these animals pose to Ontario’s domestic herd and the extensive damage they can do to agricultural crops.

The ministry considers many factors in determining the appropriate method for removing wild pigs from the natural environment, such as, whether wild pigs could be a vector for disease, if they are breeding in the wild or are causing damage, and whether ownership can be determined.

NDMNRF staff worked with local landowners to learn where the pigs were frequenting and placed bait and trail cameras in the area. On November 30, 11 wild pigs were captured by NDMNRF and the remaining 3 pigs were captured on December 6.

With respect to the wild pigs in the Pickering area, they were humanely euthanized and will be sent for necropsy and research. Through this research, we will learn about the condition of wild pigs in Ontario, potential diseases and pathogens and outcomes will inform future management.

Public assistance and reports of wild pigs locations were key to the successful operation. We encourage people to continue to report sightings to wildpigs@ontario.ca. For more information on invasive wild pigs please visit: Invasive wild pigs in Ontario.

For more on the Pickering wild boar, check out the articles below!