December 2, 2012

Game officials question how boar got here

The Eurasian wild boar ended up in Somerset County. Officials wonder where it came from.

By DOUG HARLOW Morning Sentinel

MERCER - State wildlife officials want to know how a Eurasian wild boar with long, thick hair and 2-inch tusks ended up in Somerset County recently.

The boar, weighing between 150 and 180 pounds, was shot and killed by a local hunter the day after Thanksgiving when the animal attacked and killed a domestic pig off Fredericks Corner Road near the Norridgewock town line, Game Warden Josh Bubier said.

"He was typical of what you'd see if you watched a wild hog hunting show," Bubier said. "He was thick and deep through the front part of his chest area with a narrow back, not like a normal domestic pig. The head is quite a bit different, with a sloped head, not a pronounced stubby nose."

Kendall Marden, a wildlife biologist with the state Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, said there is no doubt that the animal was a wild boar, not a farm pig gone wild. The problem, he said, is that officials don't know where it came from.

He said the only time state wildlife officials have come across a wild boar in Maine is when the animal has been traced back to a licensed farm or game preserve.

He said there are a couple of farms or hunting preserves that are regulated and licensed by the Department of Agriculture in Maine to raise the Eurasian strain of hog for game. The closest is in Dixmont, about 40 miles away, too far for it to have wandered into Mercer unnoticed. "It certainly wasn't born in the wild here in Maine," he said.

Morning Sentinel Staff Writer Doug Harlow can be contacted at 612-2367 or at:


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