Exuma has become a popular vacation destination for tourists. While the cays white sandy beaches and clear turquoise waters are certainly a draw, Exuma’s local wildlife is a huge attraction.
Unfortunately, many tourists seem to forget that these animal attractions are not a zoo. The famous swimming pigs, the Compass Cay nurse sharks, and the Allen’s Cay iguanas might be used to human interaction but they’re still wild animals.
Recently a fitness model discovered this the hard way- by a bite on the butt. Venezuelan fitness model Michelle Lewin recently posted a video on Instagram of the swimming pigs taking a bite out of her behind during a bikini photo shoot. The video shows Lewin turning, which is when one of the larger pigs went in for the bite.
Lewin posted close-ups of the bite, which show too large red marks. She didn’t appear too upset (after the initial freak-out and running away) and later posted videos of her strolling along the beach with her husband.
There have been a number of recent stories about tourists getting attacked by the local wildlife. An Instagram model and young boy were bitten by the nurse sharks on Compass Cay, and Chanel Iman, one of the supermodels in the infamous Fyre Festival promotional video, shared stories of the pigs trying to bite her while they were filming it.
It’s not uncommon for the swimming pigs to bite guests. They’ve been known to nip at fingers, and yes even butts, when they aren’t getting fed. Local guides always encourage guests to keep a close eye on the pigs. The piglets might be small, but the adult pigs are capable of causing real damage.
This should serve as a reminder to all guests visiting the swimming pigs that they are wild animals and should be treated as such. Always keep an eye on the pigs, especially the larger ones and if you have children present. Listen to the local guide and be careful when feeding them.
This news shouldn’t deter people from visiting them though. The pigs are generally gentle. As long as they’re being treated with respect, and you remember that they’re not domesticated, it should be fine. If you do visit them remember to only feed them approved food and to not leave behind any trash.