Generally smaller, hairier and more muscular than domestic pigs, the boars especially having massive forequarters and smaller hindquarters. Boars stand nearly 1m at the shoulder and can weigh as much as 205kg; sows are smaller at 60cm high and up to 114kg.
Most often black, but there is much variation in colour including ginger, brown, white, grey and smoky blue, or any combination of these colours.
These extend out from the lower jaw and curve upwards, outward and backwards. They are triangular in cross-section and may protrude more than 15cm. Boars grow much larger tusks than sows.
Rifle and calibre
Feral pigs are heavily built, strong and can be dangerous if wounded. Boars especially have thick skin with gristly shoulder shields up to 9cm thick. Rifle calibres should have plenty of hitting power, with .308, .270 and above recommended. Some hunters also use .357 or.44 calibre rifles since they hit hard at close range and are short and light to carry in thick bush.
Undrawn – 31 3/8 Douglas Score taken by A. and D.C. Sivyer in the King Country in 1993. Drawn – 45 6/8 Douglas Score taken by J. Gillespie in the Kakanui Mountains in 1914.
Record Book Qualification
Drawn tusks, 28 Douglas Score or more than 7 ½” long. Undrawn tusks, 20 Douglas Score or more than 3” long.