Apple bobbing boars

Apple bobbing boar halloween

Boars at a British zoo hogged all the treats when they bobbed for apples.

Wild boar at Whipsnade Zoo in Bedfordshire got into the spirit of Halloween yesterday (MON 27) by taking part in the ancient game.

Zoo bosses said the activity stimulates the boars’ natural behaviour as it mimics foraging for food in the wild.

Steve Perry, a senior keeper, said: “The wild boars seemed to love bobbing for apples. As soon as the apples were put into their water trough they sped over and competed with each other to win themselves a juicy apple.

“Halloween is a great opportunity for us as keepers to think outside the box when it comes to enrichment, because it’s great for the animals to experience new ways of foraging for food.”

Apple bobbing dates back to the Roman conquest of Britain, when the apple tree was said to represent Pomona, the fertility goddess.

Young unmarried people were encouraged to take a bite out of an apple floating in water or hanging on a string – the first person to bite the apple was said to be the next one to marry.

Girls who placed the apple they bobbed under their pillow were said to dream of their future lover.

The apple bobbing was part of Whipsnade Zoo’s Halloween activity week called Boo in the Zoo.

Over half term visitors can take part in pumpkin carving as well as a ghost hunt.

More high resolution pictures are available on request. To discuss rates for using pictures and copy, contact news editor Tom Knight on 07815 004413 or tom@medavia.co.uk.

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