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Crazy pigs running riot on Jutland farm

Reseachers moving in to explain aggressive and strange behavior in a pigsty


With more than twelve million pigs in Denmark, there's reason to be alarmed if they begin to riot (Photo: Scanpix)

July 18, 2014
14:10

by Andreas Jakobsen


Pig farmers Kristen and Lars Peter Simonsen in Dronninglund don't know why their pigs have started to act weird.

"They have stopped drinking water from their troughs, and on the worst days they also start to bite after each other and can become really aggressive," Kirsten Simonsen told DR.

After countless visits from veterinarians and experts proved unsuccessful, the National Pig Research Centre has now taken over the investigation into the animals' mysterious behaviour.

Orwellian animal farm
Project leader Erik Damsted told DR that researchers will set up measuring devices and video surveillance to monitor the pigsty.

"We hope it will put us closer to finding out what is going on at the farm in northern Jutland," he said.

Niels Vestergaard Salling, head of the agricultural organisation LandboNord, hopes the results may also help countless other farmers facing the same problem.

"It's common that owners can't solve a problem in their stock, like in Simonsen's case, where pigs suddenly go on the rampage. If this study can give us an overview and maybe some answers, it will help a lot of farmers."

Some researchers have pointed at electrical disturbances as a possible explanation to why pigs suddenly start to run riot, but vibrations in the ground or noise could also be factors.



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