In France, the population of wild boar is expanding dramatically.
Several reasons are given for their proliferation. The great hurricane of Christmas 1999 left French forests in such a jumble that the boar have many more places to hide from the hunters. The spread of cereal fields into traditional beef and dairy country (like Normandy) has given them a new food supply. They are especially partial to maize.
Last week, the wild boar, sanglier or Sus scrofa was officially declared a public menace. Over 15,000 road accidents a year – two-thirds of all French road accidents are attributable to animals – are caused by wild boar dashing across roads at night without looking both ways. The environment minister, Jean-Louis Borloo, has ordered an anti-boar campaign, including official culls and, possibly, a longer hunting season.
In the best tradition of France-baiting, the English writer goes on to fault les chasseurs' marksmanship.
Another English blogger facetiously reads French hunting magazines and interviews some French hunters, whose attitudes he admires. (When did they start wearing blaze orange? How un-European.) Nothing about le sanglier, however.
Perhaps NorCal Cazadora could organize a safari to Normandy.