Visayan Warty Pig
Sus cebifrons
Population size
Life Span
10-15 years
kg lbs 
cm inch 
cm inch 

The Visayan warty pig (Sus cebifrons ) is a critically endangered species in the pig genus (Sus ). It is known by many names in the region (depending on the island and linguistic group) with most translating into 'wild pig': baboy ilahas ('wild pig' in Hiligaynon,Cebuano and Waray), baboy talonon ('forest pig' in Hiligaynon), baboy sulop ('dark pig' in Cebuano), and baboy ramo ('wild boar' in Waray).

Show More

The Visayan warty pig is critically endangered due to habitat loss and hunting. It is believed to be extinct in four of the islands in its original native range, with only small surviving populations in Negros and Panay. Due to the small numbers of remaining Visayan warty pigs in the wild, little is known of their behaviors or characteristics outside of captivity.

Show Less


The Visayan warty pig is a small, forest-dwelling pig, little known, and only recently recognized as a distinct species. The males or boars are much larger than the females or sows, and, unique amongst wild pigs, grow crests and manes during the breeding season. They are named after the islands where they live, and because of the three pairs of “warts” on the face of male pigs, which may help protect their face when fighting.



Found in the past throughout the Visayan Islands, which is the central archipelago in the Philippines, these pigs are now extinct in at least 98% of their former range, the few surviving populations concentrated in the remaining habitat on the Negros and Panay islands of Negros. This species requires dense forested areas. In the past, they occurred in primary and secondary forests in mountainous regions and grasslands.

Visayan Warty Pig habitat map

Climate zones

Visayan Warty Pig habitat map
Visayan Warty Pig
Attribution-ShareAlike License

Habits and Lifestyle

There is little information about Visayan warty pigs in the wild. They live in social groups which are called sounders. An adult male with females and their young comprise a typical group. Family groups typically have three to six members, though they may have up to a dozen. Males may live on their own or in bachelor groups. This species lives a highly social life, usually foraging in family groups, and constantly communicating with squeaks, grunts, and chirrups. They are not territorial and have overlapping home ranges, sharing feeding, resting watering, and wallowing areas. Their activity is nocturnal or crepuscular; they rest in hollows during the day.

Seasonal behavior

Diet and Nutrition

Visayan warty pigs are omnivores but they mostly eat a wide variety of forest food: fruits, roots, and tubers, and will sometimes plunder cultivated cereal and vegetable crops.

Mating Habits

118 days
2-4 piglets
6 months
piglet, shoat

Little is known about the mating system in Visayans as there have been no detailed studies of their biology. It was only recently established as a separate species. After about 118 days of gestation, females exhibit nesting behavior. Their litters are usually two to four in number, the piglets being born in the dry season - January to March. A female can bear young every eight to twelve months. They carefully protect their piglets, which start eating solids at a week old and are weaned at about six months old. Juveniles gradually lose their stripes and after a year have adult coloration. Females become reproductively mature at 2 or 3 years old, however, in captivity females can conceive as early as 12 months. Males become reproductively mature when they are 2 years old.


Population threats

The Visayan warty pig is extinct on 3 of the 6 main islands where it lived and is in danger of disappearing from the fourth. Deforestation has been widespread, so habitat loss is one of the major causes of the sharp decline in numbers, along with hunting. Interbreeding with domestic pigs is a further threat. They are also killed by local farmers, who see them as pests; they are hunted extensively for local consumption, caught in wire snares and pitfall traps, and sometimes killed by explosive baiting devices buried in the ground, and are excavated when rooting.

Population number

No estimate of population size is available for this species. According to the Chester Zoo resource, only 200 pigs are thought to survive in the Philippines in their native habitat. Currently, this species is classified as Critically Endangered (CR) on the IUCN Red List and its numbers continue to decrease.

Ecological niche

Visayan warty pigs appear to play a major role in dispersing the seeds of some species of plants.

Fun Facts for Kids

  • During the mating season, the spiky head tuft of Visayan warty pig males grows into a mane as long as 9 inches (23 cm). When threatened, they raise their manes, and in doing so seem larger and more imposing.
  • Visayan warty pigs were only recognized in 1997 as a species in their own right. Not much is known about these animals in the wild.
  • Wild pigs all have straight tails; only domestic pigs have curly ones.
  • Pigs do not sweat and therefore need to cool off in mud wallows and water.
  • Captive Visayan warty pigs are very curious and playful and like to wallow in the mud.
  • There are many stories of pigs who have saved human lives, such as a pet pig by the name of Pru who pulled her owner from a muddy bog, and Priscilla, who saved a little boy from drowning.
  • For some, the pig represents fortune, happiness, honesty, and virility.
  • Pigs have a very keen sense of smell. At the tip of their snouts, they have a big round disk of cartilage that is connected to muscle and provides extra strength and flexibility for rooting about.


1. Visayan Warty Pig Wikipedia article -
2. Visayan Warty Pig on The IUCN Red List site -

More Fascinating Animals to Learn About