The wild boar (Sus scrofa), the wild relative of the domestic pig, lives in most of European forests but it’s more frequent in our evergreen oak woods. The wild boar eats fruits (mainly acorns in Bages) and roots, bulbs and rhizomes that it digs up with its snout. It can also eat some animals. Like most of mammals it is not easily seen in the forest. It walks in the twilight, while it hides into the dense vegetation during the day.
Photos 1 and 2 display a wild boar family in Sant Mateu de Bages. The two adults seen in photo 2, male and female, live together when they have to grow up the puppies likes the 5 of this family -though only 4 are seen in the photo. The wild boar is hard to be seen. However, since it’s really big, it leaves notorious traces of its activity. The most frequent ones are its deep footprints of two open toes on the mood of the puddles of the paths or nearby the pools (photo 4), the dig out ground by its snout looking for roots, bulbs, worms or edible mushrooms (photo 3, from Montserrat), the excrements (photo 5) and the worn out woods, usually pines, that the wild boar uses regularly to scratch itself (photo 6). At the end, these pines loses the bark, they appear as a naked wood on the middle of a stepped ground. Some stuck with mood thick, black hairs proof that is the boar that has caused this serious damage to the tree. Since wolves were extinguished in Catalunya, the only depredators of adult wild boars are men.
[photos Oriol Oms (1, 2), Jordi Badia (3, 6) and Florenci Vallès (4, 5)]
See the article La paradoxa espanyola, in Catalan, by Jordi Badia.