Not only does Rome have a seagull problem, but now wild boars are becoming a nuisance and are attacking Romans as well. This is all thanks to the city’s terrible garbage collection that has attracted them and gotten worse in recent years. Rome’s mayor, Virginia Riaggi, sought to correct the trash accumulation but, so far, has not. The suggestion of euthanizing boars has, not surprisingly, drawn the ire of animal rights activists who, by default, side with the vicious animals over Roman citizens and even tourists.
Romans Want to Get Rid of Wild Boars, but Killing Them? That’s Another Matter
The euthanizing of a boar and her six piglets on a playground near the Vatican has aroused fury in Rome, a city that has long complained about the often aggressive animals.
By Gaia Pianigianni, October 19, 2020, The New York Times
Wild boars are a menace in Rome, strewing garbage around the city, blocking traffic and causing numerous car accidents. Residents have been demanding action — but not this.
Animal rights activists and many Romans are expressing outrage after the authorities killed a sow and her six piglets on a playground near the Vatican, only hours after families and children had been there, feeding the boars. They say the animals should have been safely captured and transported to the wild.
“It was a mother with her little ones — just emotionally, this is terrible,” said Andrea Brutti, who is the chief official for wild fauna at Italy’s National Board for Animal Protection.
Some people have a fondness for the animals, but wild boars are far from harmless. They can be aggressive and dangerous, and are a growing presence in Rome, drawn by the uncollected trash that plagues the city.
From the city’s central streets to the outlying arteries that border parks and woods, boars have become a major driving hazard. The threat is not limited to Rome — earlier this month, two former professional soccer players died when their car hit some wild boars crossing a highway in northern Italy.
Boars are a point of contention throughout the country. Hunters have argued that the perpetually hungry animals are nuisances that have bred out of control and need to be culled to save the country’s agriculture.
Activists argue that hunters have worked to increase the number of wild boars, to enable more hunting. The fight has extended into politics, with representatives of the right-wing League party often siding with hunters.
PHOTO CREDIT: Photograph was permitted by the Museum of Natural History in Genoa, Italy without restriction By Mariomassone – Own work, CC0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=37058394