Only 200 Visayan warty pigs are thought to be left in their native habitat in the Philippines – making them the rarest of all wild pigs.

They have distinctive tufts of hair and are covered in warts (scent glands) - which aren’t that easy to spot! Our warty pigs can be found on Panay in Islands at Chester Zoo

During breeding season males grow their mane into a striking ‘rock and roll’ hair style, similar to a ‘mohican’, to impress the females. This distinctive look doesn’t last though as at the end of the breeding season the male becomes almost bald again.

The decline of the species - almost to the point of extinction - is blamed on habitat loss and hunting.

Wild populations can only be found in remaining sections of forest on the islands of Panay and Negros in the Philippines. Extinction is looming for the warty pig species and without conservation intervention they will disappear completely.

To save and protect the warty pig species it requires plenty of field research and work with the local communities to educate them on how they can help to protect their habitat.

We support two breeding facilities – one on Panay and the other on Negros. These facilities give us the chance to study their breeding behaviour in a safe environment, as little is known about these pigs in the wild.

We are working to set up new protected areas to then release them into the wild and hopefully build up the population again.

The warty pig programme is only part of much wider support we provide for Philippine conservation. You can find out more about our conservation efforts in the Philippines on our Act for Wildlife website here.

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Interesting facts

Where they live Panay and Negros, Philippines
Habitat Lowland forest.
Size up to 1.25m length
Weight Up to 40kg
Threats Deforestation, hunting, interbreeding with domestic pigs

Species Information

Scientific name Sus cebifrons negrinus
Order Artiodactyla
Family Suidae
Genus Sus
IUCN status Critically Endangered
Roles in the zoo

In situ Conservation Ambassador

Species conservation: This is a species for which we have a significant focus on in the wild, as part of our conservation projects and programmes around the world.

Education

Human Impact: This species helps demonstrate that human activities are causing serious environmental damage.

Partnerships: This species helps demonstrate that we work in partnerships with other organisations to conserve nature and natural resources.

Chester Zoo: This species helps demonstrate that as a charity Chester Zoo’s mission is to be a major force in conserving biodiversity worldwide.