No reports of invasion by wild pigs, says Johor

JOHOR BARU: The state government has not received any report of invasion by wild pigs from Sumatera in Indonesia like what happened in Melaka.

Johor Islamic affairs, agriculture and rural development committee chairman Tosrin Jarvanthi urged the public to report such cases in the state.

“We will alert the relevant authorities if wild pigs from Sumatera land on our islands along the west coast fronting Straits of Malacca,’’ he said.

Johor Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) director Salman Saaban confirmed the department had not received any information or reports on wild pigs crossing over from Sumatera to Johor.

He said this in response to a report in The Star on Sept 5 on the migration of dozens of wild boars, including piglets, which crossed the narrow Straits of Malacca in search of new habitats in Melaka.

The wild boars have chosen Pulau Besar as their new home and this prompted Melaka’s Perhilitan to clear the high population of wild boars on the island.

Malaysian Nature Society Johor chairman Vincent Chow explained that wild boars would embark on mass migration at the onset of the North East monsoon season.

“Wild pigs are known to be competent swimmers and capable of covering long distances,’’ he said.

Chow said the wild boars would swim long distances and rest along beaches to forage for food.

“They make the journey to Pontian, then to Pulau Pisang and Pulau Karimun in Indonesia before reaching mainland Sumatera,’’ he said.

He added that some of the large groups would also use Melaka as their “transit point” before crossing the Straits of Malacca to Indonesia’s Pulau Rupat.

Chow recalled that in the late 1950s, he had often seen wild pigs coming from Pahang crossing Jalan Kahang, Mersing district located about 130km from here.

“We (on board a bus) would have to wait for the thousands of wild pigs to cross the road, and sometimes this took about 30 to 45 minutes.

“If this is a regular activity now, it could be used to attract observers of this natural phenomenon, as an eco-tourism product,’’ he said. — By ZAZALI MUSA
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