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Seven of Exuma’s famous swimming pigs die

SLOAN SMITH
Guardian Staff Reporter
sloan@nasguard.com

Published: Feb 20, 2017

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The government will prevent the feeding of Exuma’s swimming pigs by visitors following the recent deaths of seven pigs on Big Major Cay, according to Minister of Agriculture and Marine Resources V. Alfred Gray.

Tourists and locals alike visit the Exuma Cays to swim with the pigs and feed them.

One of the pigs’ owners, Wayde Nixon, told The Nassau Guardian yesterday, “The pigs were given the wrong food.

“... We had the government vet in there [who] examined them all thoroughly.

“He gave them shots, he gave them medicine, and I was there and I worked with them for three days straight.”

Nixon said about 15 of the pigs are still alive.

“This incident is not going to stop people being able to come to the island,” he added.

“The other remaining pigs are alive and healthy and out on the beach and going.

“But it’s just that me and my partner (Don Rolle) are dealing with the government to regulate it now.

“... We had them pigs there almost 30 years, and never has this happened before, but now we are going to have to regulate it.

“Right now it’s blowing out of proportion with people, anybody bringing food there, anybody doing what they [want to] do.

“We have people coming there giving the pigs beer, rum, riding on top of them, all kind of stuff.

“That never happened, but lately [it has] because it’s so big, and we are never really there all the time.

“Now I will have my son and my partner’s son and we will regulate it, and they will be working there, and we will have permission from the government to do it the right way so we won’t have this problem anymore.”

Gray said there is a need for a boundary around the pigs, which currently swim up to boats as they approach.

“... If we have boundary lines, the people will be able to take photographs and see the pigs swim, all of that,” he said.

“But they will not be able to feed them things.”

Gray said his ministry has partnered with the Ministry of Tourism on the matter and will “seek to implement that as soon as is practical to do so”.


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  • Brenda:

    I just heard about your island with the pigs & was saddened to see the news on their death. Very sad just dont understand why people have to be that way, they are Gods creation & were not given to us to abuse. I would love to be a part of any kind of program you would have to help keep them safe from the 2 legged predator. I plan to vacation there quite soon & look so forward to seeing them, Very excited.
  • Kelly:

    Very sad day when people are so ignorant they would give the pigs alcohol. Happy they will now have regulations, sad that it had to happen.
  • Stephanie Webb:

    So sad! Were they the babies, adults or both? I am glad that the activities will be supervised. When I was there, people were giving the pigs very moldy bread, beer, rotten vegetables. Maybe the owners could sell healthy food to the pig tourists. That way, the food would be safe and the owners could make even more money!
  • Sandy:

    We are so sorry to hear this about your beloved pigs. We love visiting the Ecuador and enjoyed feeding the pigs and petting them. We would feed them the kitchen scraps of vegetables given to us by the kitchen at Staniel Cay. I did see people giving them beer. It is disgusting that anyone would be so ignorant. What killed the pigs? Were they given poison? We wish you the best and the same for the friendly creatures that we so enjoy.
  • Miki:

    That is so sad. I am so sorry to hear this & feel so bad for the pigs that will now have to change their lifestyle based on some truly heinous behavior of abusive people. Hope you find a way to keep them safe & happy.
 

 

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