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Animal Biodiversity and Conservation. Volume 35.2 (2012) Pages: 221-233

Characteristics of wild boar (Sus scrofa) habituation to urban areas in the Collserola Natural Park (Barcelona) and comparison with other locations

Cahill, S., Llimona, F., Cabañeros, L., Calomardo, F.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.32800/abc.2012.35.0221

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Abstract

The parallel growth of urban areas and wild boar populations in recent years has increased the presence of this species around cities and in suburban areas, often leading to conflict with local people. In the Collserola Natural Park, situated within the metropolitan area of Barcelona, wild boar have become habituated to humans and urban settings because of direct feeding by local residents. Their attraction to these areas due to an abundance of anthropogenic food sources is especially strong during the warmer summer season when foraging conditions are poorer in their natural woodland habitat; the number of captures of habituated wild boar in peri–urban areas is significantly correlated with mean monthly temperatures. Habituated boar are primarily matriarchal groups, whereas adult and sub–adult (>1 year) males are significantly less represented than in non–habituated boars. In Collserola, habituated sub–adult and adult females are significantly heavier than their non–habituated counterparts and these weight differences increase with age; in the > 3 year–old age class they may be 35% heavier. Conflicts generated by the presence of wild boar in peri–urban areas are complex, and the responses by authorities are similarly diverse and often exacerbated by ambivalent public attitudes, both towards wild boar presence and applied mitigation measures. By 2010, at least 44 cities in 15 countries had reported problems of some kind relating to the presence of wild boar or feral pigs.

Keywords

Habituation, Human–wildlife conflict, Sus scrofa, Urbanisation, Wild boar

Cite

Cahill, S., Llimona, F., Cabañeros, L., Calomardo, F., 2012. Characteristics of wild boar (Sus scrofa) habituation to urban areas in the Collserola Natural Park (Barcelona) and comparison with other locations. Animal Biodiversity and Conservation, 35: 221-233, DOI: https://doi.org/10.32800/abc.2012.35.0221

Reception date:

02/01/2012

Acceptation date:

27/04/2012

Publication date:

05/11/2012

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