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One common category of giant animals that gets frequently gets reported in tabloids all over the world is the giant pig. Sometimes these are simply very large domestic pigs, including those that go feral. See reports of Hogzilla from 2004. On a number of occasions these 'Big Pigs' have turned out to be true cryptids, ultimately recognized by science as a new species, though not necessarily pigs.

The first of these 'Big Pigs' is the Giant Forest Hog (Hylochoerus meinertzhageni) which is the largest wild member of the pig family Suidae. It is the only member of the genus Hylochoerus. Though known to Africans for many millennia and subject in many of these cultures to various superstitions it was not until 1904 that Lieutenant Richard Meinertzagen obtained some skins, and later a corpse that proved the existence of this great pig. It turned out the Giant Forest Hog was not only a new species, but a whole new genus

This hog is truly monstrous, with a skull 3 foot long, armored with curved tusks. It has unusual warty growths under its eyes. Length is around 7 foot. Is is extent through Kenya, Tanzania, Congo, Ghana, Cameroon, the Ivory Coast and Ethiopia in Africa. More truly herbivourous than any other wild pig, the giant forest hog feed chiefly on grass and other plants and does not dig for food with its snout like other wild pigs do. Giant forest hogs are nocturnal, being mainly active for about four to eight hours a day between dawn and dusk. They live in large herds (sounders) of up to twenty animals.

The Chacoan Peccary(Catagonus wagneri) from South America is another. Peccaries are medium-sized mammals of the family Tayassuidae. Peccaries are members of the Artiodactyls (even-toed ungulants) along with swine (Suidae) and the hippopotami. They are found in the southwest of North America and throughout Central and South America. The Chacoan peccary is found in the dry shrub habitat or Chaco of Paraguay, Bolivia, and southern Brazil. It has the unusual distinction of having been first described based on fossils and was thought to be an extinct species. However in 1975 the animal was discovered to still be alive and well in the Chaco region of Paraguay. The species was well known to the native people, but it took a while for science to catch up.

The Pgymy Hippo, was another giant hog of legend, that turned out to be something different.  


Clark, Jerome and Coleman, Loren. Cryptozoology A-Z. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1999. Pages 54-55, 88

Coleman, Jerry D. Strange Highways: A Guidebook to American Mysteries & the Unexplained. Alton, Illinois: Whitechapel Productions Press, 2003. Page 187

Kearns, Colin. 'Hogzilla' vs. Hunter: Reports of a 1,000-pound wild hog has townspeople stunned

Minor, Elliott. Legend grows around 'Hogzilla': 1,000-pound hog reportedly killed on Georgia plantation

Newton, Michael. Encyclopedia of Cryptozoology: A Global Guide to Hidden Animals and Their Pursuers. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, 2005. Pages 6, 124, 262

Wikipedia, The. Chacoan Peccary