Wild boar surrounded a woman who had just left a supermarket near Rome. They steal her shopping, igniting a debate about their presence in Italy’s towns and cities.
The incident came to light following a video posted on social media on Thursday. It shows the boars cornering the woman in a car park in the village of Le Rughe.
The woman backed away as she attempted to keep the four adults and two young boars at bay. It was to no avail. As soon as she dropped the shopping bag the animals pounced on it. The youngsters ate immediately, whilst the older boar grabbed what they could and scarpered.
“The poor woman,” said the author of the video.
Not the first instance of boars in towns
The mayor of Rome, last October, ordered an investigation into the shooting of a family of boar by police in a children’s playground. The killing, near the Vatican, sparked outrage and protests among some locals and animal rights activists.
There have been cases of people being injured or killed in attacks; the tusks on adult boar are dangerous. There is also an increase in sightings of boar rummaging through rubbish in urban areas.
An average 10,000 road accidents a year in Italy are attributed to wild boar.
Farmers protest over damage by wild boar
In recent years, Italian farmers have protested about wild boar wreaking havoc on their land.
In April, Coldiretti, the country’s largest farmers’ association, described the increase in the number of the animals in some Italian regions as unsustainable. The association asked the authorities to intervene.
“We must act as soon as possible and involve the army if necessary,” Coldiretti said in a statement, citing the situation in Piedmont.
Estimates put the number of wild boar at two million in Italy. Boar hunting is a popular pastime and boar meat is a staple of Tuscan and Umbrian cuisine.
Wild boar are not only an Italian affliction. Sightings of boar in urban centres have become commonplace in Greece.