Meet the Coromandel's 'Pig Man'

It's quickly becoming New Zealand's biggest unofficial tourist stop, ranked third best attraction in the Coromandel on Tripadvisor and attracting herds of visitors from around the globe.

We set out to learn more about the man whose farm is literally stopping traffic. Deep in the Coromandel, along 309 Road between Whitianga and Coromandel town, the sty is hard to miss, swarming with pigs and tourists alike.

Stu, or the 'Pig Man' as he is more affectionately known, has been living on the family farm since 1954, but the pig contingent only arrive a few years ago.

They were gifted to him by his brother, and since then Stu's sounder of swine has grown considerably.

Walking barefoot through the sty, Stu says sadly that some of his pigs have been the target of attacks.

"Usually a few go missing around Christmas."

Recently the attacks seem more malicious than swiping a cheeky ham for Christmas lunch. One of the pigs died a painful death after being shot by a crossbow.

"It's a slow and horrible way to die," he says.

The death of a pig for Stu is the death of a good friend.

He attests the pigs have excellent hygiene - he even shares his home with them.

"They are very clean animals, contrary to popular belief, and they are very intelligent creatures - as soon as they hear the sound of a car door closing, they run down from surrounding areas signalling to each other that company is here, and possibly food."

The future for the Pig Man and his farm at the moment looks bright, as one man's love of swine continue to provide a pearl of interest for visitors around the world.