|A few days later, another exciting visit occurred. Little decided to check out the inside of the house. I was in the kitchen chopping vegetables when he entered and looked up to see this! Neither of us couldn’t stop laughing about this for days. Check back for that photo soon for a hearty laugh.|
Today’s photos are from a post on this date in 2018 while living in Marloth Park and experiencing our favorite all-time warthog experience. Bear with me as we share this one more time, laughing all the while. See the link and a video here.
I struggled a little with the thought I might be boring our readers one more time while re-sharing my favorite post from South Africa in 2018. The heading for the post was as follows:
Pig on the porch…Pig in the parlor…Warthog “Little” comes to call…
|The previous day, Little gingerly climbed several steps up to the veranda, looking for pellets.|
This same experience left me reminiscing all this time while in lockdown in India for the past eight months, thinking about how much we miss living in the bush. It was only a short time later, we had a similar heading reading: “Pig on the porch…Pig in the Parlor…Pig in the pond,” when our favorite warthog, Little, did all three in one day, also adding lounging in the cement pond to cool off on a hot day.
We named him “Little” for our new readers due to his tiny tusks when other warthogs of his size generally had much more enormous tusks. After using his name over and over, he came to know it. I could call out in the garden when he was nearby, and he’d come running.
|Once he was situated, we brought him some fruit and veg.|
Pigs are known to be smarter than dogs:
“Pigs are smarter than any other domestic animal. Their ability to solve problems, like the pig I.Q. test on The Joy of Pigs, is well-documented, and they are considered by animal experts to be more trainable than dogs or cats. … Pigs are difficult to classify.”
|I sat quietly in the chair next to him, wanting to make him feel at ease.|
People underestimate the intelligence and learning ability of pigs. Still, as a lifetime pig enthusiast, I knew they were trainable and never hesitated to teach “Little” and a few other favorite warthogs in Marloth Park to respond to my voice, a somewhat high-pitched squeal of my own. For a PBS story on pigs and their abilities and intellect, please click here.
I fell in love with a pig. Throughout each day and night, my eyes scanned the garden looking for him. Little became so attached to me and I to him that he’d look into my eyes (warthogs have poor vision) while I spoke to him before he’d ever touch any pellets, carrots, and apples, I may have dropped on the ground at his feet. But, he easily made himself well known to me each time he arrived by snorting and digging up the dirt in the garden.
|That day, he was determined when he climbed the steps, feeling more at “home.” He’s come up the steps to the veranda a few times in the prior weeks, but then, it had been two consecutive days.|
On this date in 2018, I was busy inside the house, chopping carrots and apples for our wildlife visitors. It was summer during a drought. There was barely any vegetation for the animals in the conservancy. Most homeowners and visitors purchased game-warden approved pellets, lucerne (hay), and vegetables to supplement their sparse diet during these difficult times.
Sure, some animal activists complain we shouldn’t feed wild animals, and I get this concept. But, watching them die from starvation and thirst made no sense when most of us occupants in Marloth Park were more than willing to spend money and take time to feed them until the bush was lush again after the rains.
|There’s always time in his busy schedule for a pellet break.|
None of the wildlife we observed ever stopped grazing when everything was green again. They grazed, drank from the cement pond, kept clean with fresh water, and still stopped by for some pellets. But, coming to us for pellets seemed to be the same as giving your dog a treat.
But, not only did Little and the other warthogs bring us considerable entertainment and laughter, other wildlife touched our hearts every single day. The thought of returning to such daily adventures warms our hearts. Will we see Little again? Warthogs wander for miles each day, and he may find us again in our new location. Now, we can only hope and pray we’ll be able to get there in 41 days.
|Little contemplating a nap after his big meal. He slept for about an hour.|
Photo from one year ago today, December 2, 2019:
|Today, it was six years ago that Tom was checking out the views from one of the two houses we rented in Pahoa, Big Island, Hawaii. Only days later, our family began to arrive for the holidays. For more, please click here.|