Wild boar Sus scrofa

Wild boar are part of the pig family. They probably became extinct in the UK around the 13th Century due to over-hunting and habitat loss, but there have been several attempts to re-introduction the species since then.

Their fur varies from dark grey to black or brown and consists of stiff bristles and finer fur. Adult males develop formidable tusks which can grow up to 12cm in length. Piglets have a different colouring to adults which changes as they grow older. They have a chocolate coloured coat with cream, lengthwise stripes over their bodies.


Wild boar are primarily nocturnal animals and are omnivorous. They will eat a large variety of food items, although around 90% of their diet is made up of plant material.

They have exceptional hearing and sense of smell but they have very poor eyesight. Wild boar are very vocal and communicate through grunts and squeals. Adult males are usually solitary, but females and their offspring live in groups called ‘sounders’.


  • Length: 1.5m
  • Height: 60-80cm at the shoulder
  • Weight: 200kg
  • Average Lifespan: 15 – 20 years


Extinct in the UK.


Can be found throughout mainland Europe and parts of central Asia.

When to see

Throughout the year in areas where they are present


  • Wild boar hair used to be used for making toothbrushes until the invention of synthetic materials in the 1930s.

Common name

Wild boar

Species name

Sus scrofa

IUCN Red List status

Least concern

When to see in Scotland

Throughout the year in areas where they are present

Where to see in Scotland

There have been no reports of sightings on Scottish Wildlife Trust reserves.

Stay up to date with the Scottish Wildlife Trust by subscribing to our mailing list Subscribe now

Back to top