The Blog

Green Ham and Eggs

Chernobyl's legacy: radioactive wild boars

5:30 PM, Aug 19, 2010 • By VICTORINO MATUS
Widget tooltip
Single Page Print Larger Text Smaller Text Alerts

The consequences of the 1986 Chernobyl disaster continue: The soil in places like Bavaria, Germany, still has a measurable amount of Cesium, which in turn is being passed on to the wild boar population, which feeds on truffles and mushrooms. (And it doesn't help that by nature they tend to stick their snouts into the soil.) Hunters taking home their prize and hoping to feast on a nice Wildschwein later discover their meat is radioactive. And the number of contaminated wild boars is apparently on the rise.

According to the Associated Press,

Last season, hunters brought home a record 640,000, and following that trend, the amount of contaminated meat also went off the charts. Judging from the total compensation paid out in 2009, about 2,000 to 4,000 boars were found to have levels above the 600 becquerel of radioactivity per kilogram allowed for human consumption. That compares to about 125 to 250 a decade ago.

Wild boars are scary enough. (Remember the ones that killed Mason Verger in Hannibal? And no, I'll spare you the link to that clip.) But radioactive wild boars that possibly grow in size and strength when angered? I'll stick to a nice Zwiebelrostbraten, thank you very much.

Recent Blog Posts

The Weekly Standard Archives

Browse 18 Years of the Weekly Standard

Old covers