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Radioactive wild boar wander Europe's woods

Posted on Wednesday, 3 September, 2014 | Comment icon 23 comments

A female wild boar. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 PJeganathan

The effects of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster are still being felt in Europe more than 28 years later.

German authorities have reported that wild boar, which still roam the country's forests and are hunted for their meat, have been exhibiting increasing levels of radioactive contamination in recent years to the point where up to a third are unfit for consumption.

Recent tests in Saxony, where it is compulsary for hunters to determine the radioactivity of the animals before they can be sold, have shown that 297 out of 752 boars caught last year had been over the acceptable limit, some by a significant margin.

The problem stems from the infamous Chernobyl disaster which in 1986 spread deadly radioactive particles across the continent. Some of this material ended up in the soil where the wild boars frequently forage for mushrooms and truffles to eat, contaminating themselves and each other.

The government has had to pay out hundreds of thousands of Euros to hunters in compensation for the large number of boars that have had to be destroyed due to being unfit for sale.

"It doesn't cover the loss from game sales, but at least it covers the cost of disposal," said Steffen Richter of the Saxon State Hunters Association.

Source: Telegraph | Comments (23)

Tags: Wild Boar, Germany, Ukraine, Chernobyl

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #14 Posted by Mac E on 3 September, 2014, 16:57
My sarcasm doesn't go over well in text Thanks for the info though
Comment icon #15 Posted by Hobbit Feet on 4 September, 2014, 16:51
I wonder if any of the boar have cancer. If radiation causes cancer and can be used to kill cancer, would the correct amount keep cancer from developing?
Comment icon #16 Posted by questionmark on 4 September, 2014, 17:10
Good question, next question... A fast check seems to show that there is no reliable data about cancer in wild boars... which just means that nobody bothered to find out.
Comment icon #17 Posted by Bboy91 on 4 September, 2014, 22:47
Actually, this is not new! The original articles are from 2010...It's not for the first time to see that you post old articles
Comment icon #18 Posted by Princess Serenity on 5 September, 2014, 2:26
I always find the whole Chernobyl area really fascinating.
Comment icon #19 Posted by Babe Ruth on 6 September, 2014, 18:18
How so, Princess? Porque? The actual event, or its results manifesting today?
Comment icon #20 Posted by Princess Serenity on 6 September, 2014, 21:20
I don't know. Maybe because it's abandoned? [Shrugs]
Comment icon #21 Posted by RabidMongoose on 6 September, 2014, 21:39
I may have eaten one!
Comment icon #22 Posted by Silent Trinity on 8 September, 2014, 11:23
Surely though if the radioactivity was going to be of any danger to us, and as they are made out of skin, tissue and organs like us, then they will die long before before it can be of any danger to us....unless people run up to Boar corpses and start rubbing them all over their face or something....
Comment icon #23 Posted by questionmark on 8 September, 2014, 12:51
The difference is that boars live an average of 10-20 years (if they don't get shot first) reducing the chance of cancer forming due to radioactive damage by factor 5 compared to humans.

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