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Giant forest hog
Country reported: Template:Benin, Template:Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Template:Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Template:Ghana, Template:Guinea, Kenya, Template:Liberia, Template:Nigeria, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Template:Sierra Leone, Togo, Uganda

The giant forest hog (Wikipedia; Hylochoerus meinertzhageni) is a species of giant pig, generally the largest suid, native to wooded habitats across East, Central, and West Africa.

Despite its size and range, it was not formally discovered until 1904, although there had been sightings and reports since the 17th Century.[1][2] The first reports came in 1688, and explorer Henry Morton Stanley collected accounts during his final expedition to the Congo, but failed to capture the animal. A specimen was finally obtained by Lieutenant Richard Meinertzhagen, a soldier, ornithologist, and adventurer, who was shown two recently killed individuals by natives of Mount Kenya, from whom he acquired skins, and who finally came across a dead specimen near Lake Victoria in May 1904. He sent his evidence to London and was shocked to hear that the animal was an entirely new genus.[1] The discovery came only three years after that of the okapi. Oddly, the giant forest hog had been more common prior to its discovery, as the population was decimated by rinderpest in 1891.[2]

Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 Coleman, Loren & Clark, Jerome (1999) Cryptozoology A to Z
  2. 2.0 2.1 Eberhart, George (2002) Mysterious Creatures: A Guide to Cryptozoology