Swimming Pigs (and video!)

” . . . when pigs fly!” How ’bout when pigs swim?!

Yes, it’s true. Pigs swim. At least, island pigs swim!

I’ve posted about this before as part of an evening boat excursion, but it’s just too fun a topic not to revisit. Besides, the pigs really warrant their own post!

So, the scoop . . .

On a nearby (uninhabited) island, a handful of large, wild pigs are the dominant residents. Some twenty years ago, a couple of the local guys brought in two pigs and placed them on that island to breed and provide table fodder for the occasional pig roast that our local community loves to do. (Over the years, there have been funny stories about pigs slipping overboard while the guys tried to transport them by small dinghy and other such adventures.)

The pigs have slowly gained fame or notoriety (depending on whether you’ve been entertained or terrorized) as a tourist attraction. The pigs have learned that when boats approach their shoreline, these boats often bring slop and food treats. So, the pigs now swim out to meet the boats!

All too often, visitors decide it’d be fun to get out to swim with the pigs, or pet the pigs onshore. While this can certainly be entertaining and make for good vacation photos, it’s really not the best idea. These are still wild animals! And in their excited quest for food, the pigs get quite aggressive. I’ve seen pigs practically climb aboard smaller dinghies. And I’ve seen pigs chase people onshore. Unfortunately, the local medical clinic is all too familiar with treating various pig bites, some of a serious nature.

That said, they’re still fun to go observe at a safe distance!

ESPECIALLY because I hear there’s a new litter of piglets!

So, yesterday, Beau and I took a boat ride over to see the pigs. Unfortunately, the piglets were nowhere in sight. They were napping or otherwise tucked safely back in the bush. Given the aggressive nature of the pigs, presumably even more so as mommas protecting babies, I did not go ashore to root the piglets out of their hiding spot to pose for pictures!

Nonetheless, the big pigs are always a treat. See for yourselves . . .

No other boats around, so the pigs were still onshore as we approached.

Here they come to greet us!

Yup, pigs swim.

As many times as I’ve seen this phenomenon, I still chuckle.

Realizing no food was being thrown from the boat (sorry, pigs), the pigs start to turn away from the boat.

Checking us out one last time.

Ambling back ashore.

Digging nests in the cool damp sand. You can see that’s a nursing mother pig.

Although I failed to deliver piglets to you this time, I have an extra treat. To complete this virtual experience, you must hear the snorting sounds of the pigs and see their pig-paddling legs in action! So, here is a video clip. (I apologize for the wind noise – it was a squally afternoon.)

Looks to me like the pigs enjoy their own Better Life!! What do you think?

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