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Home Forums Champions’ chat Do hogs eat slugs? Reply To: Do hogs eat slugs?

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Hi MarkUK

Yes, hogs definitely do eat slugs. But, they don’t eat those big ones which tend to congregate around feeding areas on damp/wet nights – a bit big for their tiny mouths! They eat mostly small and medium ones. I have frequently seen a hog eating medium sized slugs which they rolled first, presumably to get rid of some of the slime – and not because they were desperate for anything else to eat, as I’ve seen suggested elsewhere – there was other food available.

The small slugs, which are probably eaten the most, can be tiny and would be eaten whilst the hogs were foraging in the undergrowth, so not easy for humans to see. Apparently it is those small slugs which do most damage to living plants, so useful for the hogs to eat those ones. I believe the large slugs are more involved in the breakdown of dead plant material. But I have heard reports from gardeners who say that their slug problems have disapeared after hedgehogs appeared on the scene.

(Using slug pellets/or any other kind of unnatural slug control it seems, whilst not only being bad for wildlife in general, apparently just leaves an opening for the neighbouring slugs to move in – and so the cycle goes on.)

However, I don’t think slugs are hogs favourite food which are more likely to be beetles, earthworms, caterpillars – which most humans have probably not seen them eat either! I have many times seen a beetle scampering by whilst the hogs have been eating out of their bowls. I suppose it’s easier to eat things that don’t move, given the chance!

I have seen hogs catching earthworms, though (also even when other food was available). The earthworms tend to come partly out of the ground, the hog grabs one and reverses rapidly to pull it out of the hole. So if anyone sees a hog rapidly reversing it may have caught an earthworm (the actual worm might be hidden by vegetation). Rats also eat earthworms, by the way, and are possibly even better at catching them than hogs are.