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Varaha by alexsone-d5jliga

Picture by Alexander Smyslov

The family of pigs is among champions on a survival. These animals, easily growing wild and easily adapting to various conditions, fully used opened after disappearance of the man possibilities on development of new habitats. In the course of evolution the North of Eurasia was occupied by trunk boars, and in Africa and on Zindzh land there were horned forms of pigs. For Asia the special family of predatory boars is endemic – a peculiar attempt of pigs to become carnivorous as it made entelodons in the tertiary period. In temperate areas of Asia the hyena-like deinaper (Deinaper crocutoides) – the carnivorous species being ecological analog of hyenas is widespread. To the south of the Himalayas it is replaced by a species of a close genus – varaha. In comparison with a deinaper varaha is larger species adapted for life in a rainforest. It’s growth in shoulders is about one and a half meters, length to 2 meters, weight is about 400 kg. At varaha’s powerful jaws and the extended wedge-shaped muzzle which ended with the small snout. Skull bones are quite massive – in case of need varaha strikes to competitors blows with a forehead. Canines of an animal are well developed and inflexed, but are only a little placed sideways therefore don't hamper the movement of the animal through a dense underbrush. The main purpose of canines is to be the duel weapon. During a marriage season males are coupled by canines as hooks, and try to tumble down each other, using strong muscles of a neck and shoulders. Wide ears are used for heatreturn though in a heat varaha more often simply looks for a reservoir where has a rest during the hottest time of day. On a neck and shoulders of the animal is developed the standing bristly mane similar to a mane of wild horses and creating illusion of larger size, than is in fact.
Skin on a neck and shoulders of varaha is very thick and strong – it hardly bites through even a large predator. For fastening of the muscles supporting the head, at an animal the top awned shoots on cervical and chest vertebras are well developed. Because of it the back of an animal is sloping a little.
Legs of varaha short, but strong, with two well developed hooves on the 3rd and 4th fingers. the 2nd and 5th fingers are developed very poorly, their hooves are appreciable in the form of small bumps on each side of fore- and hind legs of the animal.
Unlike the spotty northern relative, varaha has longitudinally striped coloring. The main background of coloring is reddish-brown, on the back stretch narrow longitudinal strips of black color. With color of a trunk coloring of the top part of the head of an animal – black with two large white spots under eyes sharply contrasts. This coloring has obvious warning character – varaha possesses aggressive temper and can easily rush on the competitor, driving away it from food. Lower part of the head isbrown, and mane is black.
Varaha eats mainly a forage of an animal origin. This animal often eats carrion which searches, using a keen sense of smell. Also varaha attacks small animals whom tramples or bites to death, and then eats together with bones. If necessary varaha can beat off prey of predators – it attacks and tries to bite a predator or to hook it on canines. Thanks to skin "armour" and a powerful skull it easily bears blows of predators and more often gains over them top, forcing out them from prey or to wait, while varaha will be sated. Bumps on teeth of an animal have sharp tops and cutting edges. The varaha’s female gives birth once a year to three cubs. The first two weeks pigs spend in a den built in a secluded place, and then leave it and lead nomadic life, keeping near mother. At the age of about 5 months between them the competition becomes aggravated and they start to lead independent life. The sexual maturity at them comes at the age of 2 years, but males receive real possibility to participate in reproduction not earlier than 4-year age. Life expectancy reaches 30 years.

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