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Warthog

CONSERVATION STATUS : LEAST CONCERN
COMMON EXTINCT
Classification:

Order: Artiodactyla
Genus & Species: Lycaon pictus
Family: Suidae

Range:

Warthogs have a large range that extends across most of sub-Saharan Africa into eastern Africa and down to northern South Africa in areas with open woodland savannas.

Habitat:

Common warthogs are found in open and wooded savannas, grass-steppes, and semi-deserts. Warthogs avoid rain forests, deserts, and high elevations. They also utilize areas that were formerly wooded and cleared for pastures. To cope with extreme temperatures, their habitat must also include areas with wallows and burrows.

Activity:

Diurnal. Warthogs spend most of the day looking for food and are normally found in small family groups called soundings. At night, they will seek shelter in burrows and sleep with their head towards the opening of the burrow; this is to allow for a quick escape out of the burrow.

Size:

Length: 35 inches – 60 inches.

Height: 25 inches – 35 inches at shoulders.

Weight: 200 pounds — 250 pounds.

Longevity:

Average lifespan is 15 years, but accounts range from 11-18 years.

Description:

Warthogs are named for two prominent pairs of large, fleshy bulges that project from the male’s head. Their head is large and broad at the rear, tapering towards the snout which has two upwardly curved upper tusks, ranging from 10-25 inches for males and 6-10 inches on females. Their lower jaw also has a pair of shorter tusks that are similarly sized in males and females. Warthogs are usually black or brown and they have a mane that extends down their head and neck to their middle back.  Tails are longer and end with a tuft of hair. Common warthogs do not have subcutaneous fat and they have a very sparse coat making them susceptible to extreme environmental temperatures. They have relatively long, thin legs that end with hooved feet.

Ecology, Adaptations, Etc:

Common warthogs live in one of three social units – solitary as adult males, bachelor groups of younger males, and sounders of 4-16 females and her mixed-sex offspring. Warthogs are not territorial and several groups can peacefully share the same resources if they are plentiful. If resources are scare, there may be some intergroup competition. Warthogs are highly vocal and produce a wide range of grunts, growls, snorts and squeals that serve as greetings, maintaining contact, warning calls, and threat displays.