Pig

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A pig is any of the animals in the genus Sus, within the Suidae family of even-toed ungulates. Pigs include the domestic pig, its ancestor the wild boar, and several other wild relatives. Pigs are omnivores and are highly social and intelligent animals.

Contents

Description and behavior

A typical pig has a large head with a long snout which is strengthened by a special prenasal bone and by a disk of cartilage at the tip.[1] The snout is used to dig into the soil to find food and is a very acute sense organ. There are four hoofed toes on each foot, with the two larger central toes bearing most of the weight, but the outer two also being used in soft ground.[2]

The dental formula of adult pigs is 3.1.4.3 in each jaw, giving a total of 44 teeth.[3] The rear teeth are adapted for crushing. In the male the canine teeth form tusks, which grow continuously and are sharpened by constantly being ground against each other.[1]

Distribution

With around 2 billion individuals alive at any time, the domesticated pig is one of the most numerous large mammals on the planet.[4][5]

The ancestor of the domesticated pig is the wild boar, which is one of the most numerous and widespread animals.[citation needed] Its many subspecies are native to all but the harshest climes of continental Eurasia and its islands, from Ireland and India to Japan and north to Siberia. Although it has been exterminated in some areas, its numbers are stable or even increasing rapidly, in most of its native range.

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