Des Moines Blank Park Zoo welcomes red river hogs


Photo: Des Moines Blank Park Zoo

(Des Moines, IA) -- The Des Moines Blank Park Zoo is welcoming two red river hogs. The animals are native to Africa, are rust-colored with a white stripe down the back. Zookeepers say the hogs most favorite past-time is to wallow in the mud to stay cool. It's hope the pair, named Shallot and Truffle will breed and have piglets.

Zookeepers say Shallot, the male, is three years-old, and has warts on his muzzle. Truffle, the 10 year-old female, does not.

Details about red river hogs:

Size: 40-50 inches long

Weight: 100-285 pounds

Habitat: Dense vegetation found in rainforests, swamps, steppes and savannas

Range: Western and Central Africa

Median Life Expectancy: 15.3 years

Diet,Wild: roots, fruit, seeds, crops, grass, nuts, insects, bird eggs, reptiles, carrion, and domestic animals

Diet, Zoo: special formulated grain, fruits, vegetables, nuts, bugs, eggs, hay and alfalfa.

Reproduction: Gestation is about four months, average of three – four piglets are born. Males and Females co-parent.

Threats: Main predators are leopards and humans. Poached for meat and seen as agricultural pest.

Conservation Status: Least Concern

(Photos from Des Moines Blank Park Zoo)