Seven swimming pigs in the Bahamas have died after locals claim tourists were feeding the animals rum and beer.
Several swimming pigs have been found dead in the popular Bahamas tourist attraction of Big Major Cay. Reports have emerged that rowdy tourists were to blame after feeding the pigs alcohol and riding them.
The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism website says that, previously, tourists were free to feed the pigs without restriction. But now, that’s all going to change.
V Alfred Gray, the country’s Minister of Agriculture, said from now on “people will be able to take photographs and see the pigs swim… but they will not be able to feed them things”.
The swimming pigs bring many tourists flocking to “Pig Beach” in Exuma, a district of the Bahamas consisting of over 365 islands.
The pigs are not native to the region and nobody knows how they arrived many decades ago. Some locals believe they were left by a group of sailors who failed to return and cook them.
Animal rights group, PETA, has criticised the attraction and urged tourists not to visit the beach.
Elisa Allen, Director of PETA UK, said: “Pig Island is no paradise for pigs. They’re not native to the Caribbean, and their pale, sensitive skin can easily burn when exposed to the strong sunshine day after day. With little vegetation on the island, they rely on food from tourists – some of whom have purportedly been plying them with alcohol.
“To control their populations, adult pigs are reportedly slaughtered to make way for babies – a fact which, of course, doesn’t make it into the Instagram snaps.”