‘I thought he was attracted by the pizza’: wild boar bites beachgoer in Genoa

A woman bitten by a wild boar on a beach in Genoa shortly after she had eaten a pizza has hit out at the city’s “deterioration” as she became the latest Italian to experience a close encounter with the animals.

The attack happened on the beach in Sturla, a district of the northern Italian city, where Rossana Padoan Falcone, 57, had gone to relax after work on Friday evening.

“I was on the beach, sitting on my towel,” she told La Repubblica. “I was enjoying the breeze when a wild boar appeared next to me: I remained still – this is what they advise doing – but then he came up to me again and bit my arm.”

Padoan Falcone, who is an activist for the Democratic party, said she had just eaten a pizza when the “quite big” boar appeared. “I thought he was attracted by the pizza, and that he would try to open the cardboard box that contained some leftovers,” she added. “Instead, he bit me.”

She said she screamed, and that one fellow beachgoer came to help as her arm bled, while others fled in panic. She was taken to hospital, where, on top of a tetanus jab, she was given antibiotics and medication to treat potential rabies.

Although it is not the first time wild boar have ventured to the beach in Genoa – in June, a pack of three tried to steal nibbles laid out on a table alongside sundowners – it is believed to be the first time anyone has been bitten.

A woman in Rome last year had her shopping stolen by a herd of wild boar who surrounded her in a supermarket car park, rekindling a debate about the growing numbers of the animals and their presence in towns and cities.

Padoan Falcone said the beach attack was a sign of Genoa’s “deterioration”.

“It is unacceptable to put citizens at such risk,” she said. “I was on a beach where, next to me, there had been a couple with a child in a pram. What if the boar had bitten the child? That beach is also accessible by disabled people – why put them at risk? It needs to be manned.”


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