WATCH OUT: There's pigs about in the New Forest!

WATCH OUT: There's pigs about in the New Forest!

Published at 1:43pm 9th September 2019.

Hundreds of pigs and piglets have been turned out to eat acorns and nuts as pannage season starts.

Every September pigs are released onto the forest for a set time to hoover up fallen acorns, beechmast, chestnuts and other nuts; green acorns in particular are poisonous to the New Forest ponies and cattle which roam the forest.

It's the only time of year that the pigs are allowed to roam the open forest, the rest of the time they are kept in their smallholdings by the commoners.

The practice dates back to the time of William the Conqueror, who founded The New Forest in 1079.

New Forest pigs are fitted with a ring through their nose which still enables them to forage on the forest floor for food but stops them from rooting into the ground with their snouts causing damage to the land.

Some of the different breeds of pig that you can find out on the New Forest include: Tamworth, Gloucestershire Old Spot, the British Saddleback and the Wessex Saddleback.

The acorn diet gives pannage pork a rich, full flavour.

Drivers have been urged to watch out for the piggies, and we're being asked not to approach or feed them.

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