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Saskatchewan puts moratorium on wild boar farms, toughens regulations

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The Saskatchewan government has put a moratorium on new wild boar farms, after decades of expanding feral swine populations.

The province also says existing farms will require licensing and regular inspection.

Toby Tschetter, the chair of Sask Pork, says the regulations will help the industry respond to animal escapes and potential disease outbreaks.

Research from the University of Saskatchewan says wild pigs -- a mix of wild boar and domestic swine -- became a problem in the 1990s, when many escaped livestock farms and adapted to the Prairies.

The research says the animals have grown their territory at a rate of nine per cent per year in Canada, threatening native species, such as nesting birds, deer, agricultural crops and farm livestock.

It says the pigs have also adapted to frigid temperatures and can breed in any season.

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