28 November 2001
500 wild boar live in south-east

By FWi staff

UP to 500 wild boar may be living in woodland along the south coast of England, according to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

In a feature on exotic species making their homes in the UK, the Daily Expresssays wild pigs were wiped out the 16th century.

But some being farmed escaped when trees fell on their enclosures during the 1988 hurricane and fled to woodland.

All efforts to recapture them failed and they have thrived in Kent and Sussex.

Some groups have called for them to be eradicated due to fears they could introduce disease to domestic pigs or cause traffic accidents.

Government vets considered culling the animals during the height of the foot-and-mouth crisis amid concerns that they could spread the disease.