Pigs were first released in New Zealand in the late 1700s to act as a food source for castaways. Over the next hundred years, releases were made on many offshore islands and at numerous places throughout the mainland.
Feral pigs are omnivorous, opportunistic feeders that will eat grasses, roots, crops, seeds and other animals when available. They will eat indigenous snails, invertebrates, frogs, lizards and ground-nesting birds and their eggs. They also cause damage to the forest floor and pasture by rooting up the ground in search of food.
Populations of feral pigs exist in New Zealand’s North and South Islands and on numerous offshore islands. Populations vary from low to high depending on the habitat. Localised infestations of feral pigs exist throughout Marlborough.