|This hog seen
from the front shows the wild boar's massively powerful shoulders that
taper to the hind quarters. His back bristles show the longer, raised
strip down the middle. The strength of the enormous jaws can snap
an arm in two.|
Even though, with his white shoulder stripe (list), this boar shows his domestic background, he is the true wild boar type, and he is one of the meanest, most dangerous, dog-smart hogs we've had on our preserve.
The boar's tusks are not showing from the front, but this hog has 3 inches of ivory from the gum line to the tip. This is the size at which most boars' tusks just begin to show with the mouth closed.
|American wild boar
are lean and athletic. Compact, high and wide at the shoulder tapering
to the hip, their narrow heads lead to an impossibly long snout.
Ears are smaller, legs longer and coats usually more coarse and dense than
any domestic hog. The back bristles stand on end, peaking at the
shoulder, earning the hogs their name of "razorback". The typical color
is black, but they can have any color, in any pattern. The typical
weight is around 150 pounds, but they can less commonly become much heavier,
to well over 300 pounds.
A boar's Russian ancestry is prized by many hunters, and inaccurately assessed by about as many. The single most reliable indicator of a European ancestry is the bristle...the bristle tips will be a lighter, usually cream, color. The Eurasian piglets are striped with lengthwise stripes, but so are some domestic piglets. The Eurasian hog is typically brown with a lighter underbelly and darker face, legs and ears.
Boars have prominent tusks (Sows have much smaller ones.) that never stop growing. The upper jaws have the stumpier "whetters"; the lower jaws the long, outwardly projecting "cutters". The whetters constantly shear the edge of the cutters (like a whetstone) making them razor sharp weapons that can fatally puncture an opponent or easily slice through a 3 inch tree root. The cutters are often worn or broken during fighting or rooting, but renew themselves with continuous growth and sharpening. When you see an agitated boar popping his jaws and foaming at the mouth he is actively honing his most lethal weapon. Hunters who hunt with dogs fear the 1.5 to 3 inch tusks more than they do the longer ones. While they are all deadly weapons, the shorter teeth are often sharper and placed at just the right angle to do maximum damage.
The shield of the wild boar is his protection from the tusks of his adversaries. It covers the shoulders and tapers back over his ribs. It is made of cartilage and scar tissue and thickens and hardens with every injury. Shields can stop bullets including .44 magnums and .45/70's. Faster modern bullets, however, like the 30-06, can penetrate a shield.
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