Kunekune

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Kunekune
Kunekune
Male (left), female (right), Kunekune pigs
Conservation statusRare
Country of originNew Zealand
Traits
  • Pig
  • Sus domesticus

The Kunekune /ˈknɛknɛ/[1] is a small breed of domestic pig from New Zealand. Kunekune are hairy with a rotund build, and may bear wattles hanging from their lower jaws. Their colour ranges from black and white, to ginger, cream, gold-tip, black, brown and tricoloured. They have a docile, friendly nature, and can successfully be kept as pets.[2][3]

History[edit]

The breed is believed to have descended from an Asian domestic breed introduced to New Zealand in the early 19th century by whalers or traders. They differ markedly from the feral pig of European origin known in New Zealand as a "Captain Cooker".[4] The native Māori people of New Zealand adopted Kunekune; kunekune is a Māori-language word meaning "fat and round".[5]

By the 1980s, only an estimated 50 purebred Kunekune remained. Michael Willis and John Simister, wildlife park owners, started a breeding recovery programme, which encouraged other recovery efforts. As of 2010, the breed no longer faces extinction, with breed societies in both New Zealand and the United Kingdom. In 1993, two were imported into the United States from the UK.[6]

Behavior[edit]

In 2017, a report of Science Daily claimed that Kunekune has remarkable social learning with "astonishingly good memory".[7]

Appearance[edit]

The Kunekune is covered in hair which can be long or short, and straight or curly. Hair colours include black, brown, ginger, gold, cream, and spotted combinations. It has a medium to short, slightly upturned snout, often black, and either semilopped or pricked ears. It has a short, round body with short legs and may have two wattles (called piri piri) under its chin. The Kunekune stands about 60 cm (24 in) tall. An adult Kunekune can weigh between 60 and 200 kg (130 and 440 lb), males being considerably heavier than females.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "kunekune" - Māori Dictionary
  2. ^ Oldham, Cydni (2020-02-24). "Kune Kune - Description, Habitat, Image, Diet, and Interesting Facts". Animals Network. Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  3. ^ "A Guide to Keeping Kunekune Pigs". www.britishkunekunesociety.org.uk. Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  4. ^ "Captain Cooker" Archived 2010-09-05 at the Wayback Machine, Te Ara Encyclopedia of New Zealand
  5. ^ "About Kunekunes". The New Zealand Kunekune Association. Retrieved 2021-02-02.
  6. ^ "The men who brought the kunekune pig back from the brink". Stuff. 2020-10-12. Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  7. ^ "Kune Kune piglets possess social learning skills and have an astonishingly good memory". ScienceDaily. Retrieved 2021-04-15.
  8. ^ The New Zealand Kunekune Association. ""Miniature" kunekune pigs". The New Zealand Kunekune Association. Archived from the original on 2016-06-12. Retrieved 2015-08-07.

External links[edit]