Bearded pig

(Sus barbatus)




Facts about this animal

The bearded pig is a relatively slender wild boar with a head-body length of 100-165 cm, a height at shoulder of 72-85 cm, and a body-weight of up to 150 kg.

Bearded pigs have long slender legs and an elongated head. There are two pairs of small facial warts. Most characteristic is the yellowish-white beard on snout and cheeks. The body is rather sparsely covered with usually light grey bristles. Underwool is lacking.

Bearded pigs are predominantly diurnal and generally sedentary animals but may occasionally exhibit large scale population movements involving groups of up to 300 individuals.

After a gestation period which is likely about the same as in the wild boar (about 115 days), a litter of usually 3-6, sometimes up to 11, piglets is born. Births may occur all year round, but seem to peak in August-September when most forest trees are fruitung.

Bearded pigs feed on seeds of trees, fallen fruit, roots, stems of wild bananas, herbs, and probably earthworms, and along the coast they dig up and eat turtle eggs. They are also known to follow groups of macaques around the forest, scavenging for fruits the monkeys leave behind.

Did you know?
that the bearded pig does interbreed with the domestic pig (Sus scrofa f. domestica), producing young in which both sexes are fertile? Cross-breeding experiments carried out in the 1890s at the then "Haustiergarten" at Halle (Germany) involving two female bearded sows and a European wild boar were successful, however mortality in the F2 generation was fairly high.


Name (Scientific) Sus barbatus
Name (English) Bearded pig
Name (French) Sanglier à barbe
Name (German) Bartschwein
Name (Spanish) Cerdo barbudo
CITES Status Not listed
CMS Status Not listed



Photo Copyright by
Colin Burnett



Range Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia (Kalimantan, Sumatera), Malaysia (Peninsular, Sabah and Sarawak), Philippines
Habitat Most commonly in primary and secondary evergreen forests, but may be found also in other habitats from beaches to upland forests.
Wild population No global data available. Still abundant in parts of its range, but generally reclining due to high hunting pressure.
Zoo population 60 animals reported to ISIS (2008).

In the Zoo

Bearded pig


How this animal should be transported

For air transport, Container Note 74 of the IATA Live Animals Regulations, should be followed.


Find this animal on ZooLex


Photo Copyright by
BS Thurner Hof

Why do zoos keep this animal

Deemed to be ugly by many visitors, the bearded pig bis certainly a very interesting species, which is a good ambassador for the conservation of the South-East Asian rainforests, which are intensively logged and replaced by palmnut plantations.

The bearded pig is the member of the genus Sus, which phenotypically differs most from the well-known Eurasian wild boar. Displaying bearded pigs with a view of demonstrating species diversity within a genus is therefore also of educational interest.