Wild boar returns to human mother after being taken away by forest officials in India

A wild boar that was forcibly removed by Indian Forest officials has returned to its human mother, who raised it from a piglet. Two years ago, Kuntala Pendeia, a tribal woman from Purusottampur village near Keonjhar in eastern India had come across a helpless and abandoned wild boar piglet in the forest. She took it home and brought it up as her pet, naming it Dhud (Milk). Dhud grew up in its human family playing with Kuntala’s children and other pets. Eventually, Indian forest officials discovered that Kuntala had kept a wild animal as a pet, which was in violation of the Wildlife Protection Act of India. They went to her house on March 11, 2021, and forcibly took away the wild boar, and released it in the forest. The officials’ move was heavily criticised in the media and a heartbroken Kuntala was spotted searching for Dhud in the forest, though the animal could not be traced. On March 18 the wild boar suddenly surfaced and responding to Kuntala’s calls. She took her pet back home where it is again living in peace. The family is however tense as they do not know what the officials will do now. Honorary Wildlife Warden Subhendu Mallik said: “The officials made an error. The animal was starving in the wild as it did not know how to find food on its own. Ideally, wild animals in captivity should be first rewilded and trained in life skills and then sent back to the forest."