AUTHORITIES in some Madrid municipalities are calling for new measures to control the numbers of wild boar in the area – estimated at between 35,000 and 40,000 and growing.
It is claimed half of the animals are carriers of tuberculosis.
The problems are worse in the areas of Torrelodones, Las Rozas, Galapagar, Hoyo, Alcobendas, San Sebastián de los Reyes and Aranjuez.
Boar are increasingly approaching urban centres in the mountains and forest areas.
Wild boar have been blamed for two serious traffic accidents and signs have been installed to warn drivers of the dangers.
The public have also been advised not to feed them or leave rubbish bags outside waste collection points.
Some municipalties have invested heavily in special fencing to keep the wild boar out.
It is rare for a male boar to attack a human but females may if their piglets are threatened.
The regional government has said the wild boar are the municipalities responsibility when they are in the towns adding, “wild boar control is analogous to any other pest-like control of animals that can be carried out by the town hall (cockroaches, rats, pigeons and others), none of which, including wild boar, can be treated as a companion animal, nor domestic.”
It is estimated that legal hunters with licences have killed more than 21,000 boar over the last five seasons. But the numbers are still increasing.
Experts say the animals do not have predators and are omnivores, so they feed more easily. A two-year-old female can have 10 offspring a year.
The goal is to reduce the numbers over the the next five years. Hunters supervised by the regional government will finally begin a cull next week after several delays.
It is suggested that meat from the slaughtered swines could be donated to NGOs, once it has been passed fit for human consumption by the slaughterhouses.