Boar Down!

Herschel Smith · 30 Oct 2022 · 9 Comments

Readers may have noticed I was absent the last several days.  It was a good time away.  A very good buddy and neighbor of mine, Robert, and I went hunting courtesy of the fine folks with Williams Hunting in South Carolina. I was shooting a 6mm ARC rifle with a Grendel Hunter upper, Aero Precision lower, Amend2 magazines, Brownells scope mount, Radian Raptor charging handle, Nikon Black scope, and a Viking Tactics sling.  I have no complaints about the gun.  It's at least a 1 MOA gun…… [read more]

Can Whitetail Managers Take Back Feral Pig Country?

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 3 days ago

Outdoor Life.

America’s hunters and wildlife managers are well into the feral hog war. More than 6 million wild pigs roam the country, gobbling down native flora and outcompeting native fauna. They’re also hell on agricultural crops. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, hogs cause $1.5 billion of damage annually.

Researchers think that number may be closer to $2.5 billion now, but more research needs to be done to determine an accurate figure,” says Ben Westfall, the National Deer Association’s conservation coordinator.

There are massive efforts by government agencies and private landowners to cull feral hogs and stop their spread. Whitetail deer managers are at the tip of the spear, because pigs can also have a negative impact on deer.

Unfortunately, there hasn’t been a lot of formal, university-led research on how pigs impact whitetails.

There doesn’t need to be university-led research.  Those are the same pointy head idiots who recommend against hunting to cull the hog population (but recommend government sponsored “sharp shooters”).

I can tell you what happens.  They compete for the same sorts of food and bedding areas.  If the feral hogs come in, the deer leave.  It’s that simple.  The deer won’t fight the hogs.  But I think the article does get to that.

When hogs first appear on the scene, whitetails tend to avoid them, meaning they settle for lower quality bedding areas and food sources. This is even truer for mature bucks, which seem to have less tolerance for hogs than younger bucks, does, and fawns do.

However, in areas where hogs have been present for years, deer seem to get used to them.

Well, that last part is only sort of true.  They are still displaced and still compete for the same food and bedding, they do learn to live in the same geographical area, but if you want to deer hunt in an area heavily populated by hogs, you’re best bet is to move on.

“Based on my observations, deer do adapt to hogs if they’ve been present a long time,” says, Dr. Grant Woods, a renowned deer biologist and founder of Growing Deer TV. “I see deer in South Florida ignoring hogs unless they get within 30 yards or so. I’m sure where hogs are new neighbors, deer give hogs more space. There’s certainly more food for deer if hogs are removed, and I suspect they’d be a bit calmer.”

Still, whitetails can be forced to move out of areas if hogs over-browse habitat and dominate resources. The higher the hog densities, the worse this problem gets.

That’s what I just said.

“It’s more about the food sources in the area,” he says. “If the hogs eat all the food, the deer will move to a new food source and return once the food source is available.”

The good news is that when hogs are removed (or severely culled) from the landscape, deer seem to bounce back. Anecdotes from the field are somewhat mixed but they are mostly promising. According to most deer managers I spoke with, whitetails generally return soon after hogs are removed. This can take longer in areas where the habitat is seriously degraded, but under average conditions, whitetails often return rather quickly. This is especially true in areas that offer adequate bedding areas, along with food, water, and security cover.

Once feral pigs become established, landowners can remove most of the hogs from their property. However, management is often very costly, and if neighboring landowners aren’t applying equal or greater management efforts, hog populations will continue to grow.

That’s why feral hogs can’t be eradicated.  Culling the population on a 100 acre plot of land (whether by hunting or trapping, or both) does no good if the neighboring farms don’t do exactly the same thing, and as I’ve pointed out before, that’s very, very, very expensive.

Feral pig managers have a mighty steep hill to climb. Typical hunting tactics have proven to be mostly useless as management tools. Sure, hog hunting is fun. And it might remove a porker or two from the property. But on a landscape population level, it doesn’t accomplish much, and it can make pigs even warier. Even when running dogs, hunting doesn’t remove enough hogs to decrease overall population densities.

Furthermore, fertility control isn’t in heavy use yet. The heavily debated toxicant called Warfarin isn’t permitted in any state, and there’s a chance it won’t ever be.

Good Lord.  There’s that awful, horrible idea floated again of putting a toxicant into the environment.  For heaven’s sake, don’t do that.  We have enough toxicants in the environment already.  Besides, the unintended consequences of such a introduction could be terrible.

Generally speaking, it’s easier to trap pigs when food is scarce in the winter and early spring. This is when bait is most effective. It’s also best to trap when the most sows are pregnant. (This is easier than trying to trap sows and their piglets together.) Capturing the entire sounder is the goal—from the biggest sows down to the smallest members of the group. Of course, hogs like to stay closer to water, so bottomlands, marshes, swamps, and other lowland areas are all good locations to try.

As I’ve said, sounders don’t stick together in proximity the way this tactic makes is seem.

“The best thing the average land manager can do is cooperate with their state wildlife agency and familiarize themselves with the management efforts taking place as well as various programs that may be available to them,” Westfall said. “Many states have hog specific or cost-share programs in which they will work with landowners to help control the problem. It is our responsibility as landowners, managers, and hunters to know what our state wildlife agency is doing, understand that their efforts and methods are based on scientific research, and do our best to assist with their efforts in any way that we can.”

The best thing land managers can do is kill as many hogs as possible as quickly as possible, whenever and wherever they can.  This means trapping, hunting, night vision, game cameras, research, communication, and all the things they already know about.  I would find it hard to believe that land managers in South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, and other states, don’t already know all about the problems.  I’m sure they’ve been engaged in this war for years now.  If they haven’t, they need other land managers.

How You Know That Dummies Are Making Suggestions About Containing The Feral Hog Problem

BY Herschel Smith
4 weeks, 1 day ago

I didn’t respond to this comment at the time because I wanted it to “soak” a while first.  Here is Steve Kellmeyer’s comment on a previous post.

Shooting individual hogs is a VERY bad idea. The only way to eradicate feral hogs is to capture an entire SOUNDER, the whole thing, at one time. If you just kill individual hogs, they break into multiple sounders which all go their separate ways. You turn them into quicksilver and they spatter everywhere.

There are ways to catch whole sounders at once. Do that. You get more meat for the poor, you actually eradicate the population.

Steve isn’t a thinking man.  No one is going to “eradicate” the feral hog population.  Hear me now and hear me good.  Feral hogs are around for good.  They will not be eradicated.  Period.  Full stop.  But this comment goes further by asserting that “If you just kill individual hogs, they break into multiple sounders which all go their separate ways.”

Steve has never hunted hogs before.  That isn’t how any of this works.  Hogs sometimes travel in sounders, sometimes not.  Sometimes if there is a sounder, it might consist of a few hogs, mostly sows, but even sows run alone sometimes.  I’ve seen it.  Boars mostly run alone.  They may come back to a sounder from time to time for copious mating, but they don’t necessarily stick around other hogs all the time.  When you see hogs, you may see one, or you may see two, or you may see twenty at a time.  The boars that are alone aren’t in some sort of panic to get around a sounder because he loves his pigs.  Wildlife biologists are anthropomorphizing hog behavior.

They travel in the day, they travel in the night time hours.  They adapt and adjust rapidly, and no one tactic will be successful all the time and in all circumstances.  They feed in the day, they are nocturnal feeders.  They defy strict categorization, regardless of what “Steve” says.  Ask me how I know.  I know partly because I’m not a pointy head wildlife biologist who thinks he can write a journal article or be interviewed for the newspaper, or contract a hired hand, and make things okay.

That seems to be the way of things at the moment while time is ebbing away to cap their population.  Witness this article concerning Canada’s exploding feral hog population.

What Manitoba does have are provincial rules that allow wild pig hunting any time of year with no bag limit, or restriction on number of animals they take. In B.C., “hunting is the only control measure,” the Invasive Species Council wrote in 2019.  In Saskatchewan, although “wild boar may be shot by Saskatchewan residents without a licence to protect their property, hunting is not a recommended control measure,” Sharks explained in an email.

Alberta’s strategy incentivizes hunting directly, offering to pay hunters $75 per set of ears. The CBC reported last fall that zero kills had been made in the bounty program, but Brook is not a fan of the idea.

“I have been vocally saying that a bounty is a great option if you want more wild pigs. That is a fantastic strategy — if you want to double your pigs,” Brook said sarcastically.

He explains that research shows hunting actually accelerates the spread of wild pigs, as they flee to new areas to evade hunters.

Instead, the wildlife biologist recommends hiring a professional trapper.  Next up, this stupid article.

An open hunt intended to eradicate Alberta’s wild boar population may instead make the feral swine more elusive to bounty hunters, a researcher warns.

The province has placed a price on the heads of wild pigs — re-establishing a bounty program designed to root out stubborn populations of the invasive species.

The hunt must be carefully managed, said Ryan Brook, an associate professor in the agriculture department of the University of Saskatchewan and director of the Canada Wild Pig Research Project.

Sporadic hunting will make the animals harder to track, Brook said. Wild boar quickly learn to disperse and evade threats — and will pass these tricks onto their young.

They already know those lessons, Ryan, and if they don’t, they’ll learn them in a single day when your local trapper puts out corn feeders and drops cages on them.  I could go on and on with these articles, but you get the picture.  Some of them want to hire professional “sharpshooters,” as if he can do something that a hunter can’t or his shot won’t scatter a sounder while a hunter’s shot will (by the way, neither will happen).  They want to use tactics that will be equally found out and learned by the hogs.  Additionally, those methods are affecting the known, visible hog population, not the ones we know are there but not cataloged by the pointy head wildlife biologists.

I repeat, feral hogs won’t be eradicated.  It’s not going to happen.  It’s far too late for that.  These hog cages dropping on corn feeders require expensive material and construction, cameras, people watching and patterning them, and they’re good for about as long as one or two catches, and then it’s over.  The hogs won’t come back after investing weeks of patterning the hogs and ensuring that they are healthy with good food.  And the trappers charge a lot of money.  Besides, this video shows what happens fairly well – the catch of this massive operation is about 50 hogs with two cages.

There are more than 1.5 million feral hogs in Texas alone.  That estimate is probably very low.  At 1.5 million hogs, 50 per massive nighttime operation, and assuming 10 such catches per night over the state (consider the cost of an operation like that), it would take 3000 days or 8.22 years to make your way through the population assuming no reproduction at all.

Do you see the scope of the problem?

So follow the pointy head wildlife biologist’s advice and trap if that’s what you want to do.  Also, hunt them, individually and collectively, alone and in sounders.  Don’t poison them as I’ve seen some idiots suggest because that poison will make its way into the ecosystem.  That may be the dumbest solution I’ve seen floated.

But to assert that killing a hog will make the problem worse is the most asinine advice I’ve witnessed.  Feral hogs don’t fit neatly into your Aristotelian categories.  Your error is in trying to categorize them at all.  Don’t categorize them – kill them.

They don’t do what you would predict, and they won’t do what you want.  If you want to cap the feral hog population, do everything possible to kill as many as you can by any means you can wherever and whenever you can.  Hunters are not the problem and the solution isn’t another tax and public works project.

Got it?

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Hogs in Houston

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 2 weeks ago

As one might expect, here’s another article on the destructiveness of feral hogs.  Homes, golf courses, farms, graveyards, you name it.  They destroy everything in their path.  Here’s the money quote for me.

Jamie Sugg, the Texas A&M Agrilife extension agent in Walker County told Houston Media last week: “It’s not a case of if you have a hog problem, but when. They are everywhere.”

I suspect this was referring to Texas, but it could just as well have been America.  It’s not a matter of if, but when you start suffering hog problems.

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Hogs Are Running Wild in the U.S.

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 3 weeks ago

Glenn Reynolds post a link to hunting feral hogs from a helicopter in Texas.  Bacon, Glenn says.  Nope.

My hog gave me shoulders (what you would know as the ham), ribs and backstraps (what you would know as pork tenderloin).  A lot of all of it.  Feral hogs are too lean to give you bacon.

Anyway, feral hogs aren’t just a problem in the South as the link alludes to (” … an invasive species in the southeastern United States“).  Where do they get these “journalists” anyway?  That’s very old and outdated information.

Based on this report, I pointed out that “They reproduce faster than lethal removal can take them out, they’ll adapt to their surroundings, they’ll dig up the ecosystem to the point it looks like a rototiller came through, they’ll kill indigenous game, and they’ll come after humans too.”

They’ve adapted to the harsh, cold weather in Canada.  If you consider these like any other animal you’ve ever studied, you’re on the wrong track.  They defy your expectations.  They’re warm weather animals.  They’re cold weather animals.  They’re nocturnal, and they eat in daylight too.  They will come after you.  They will even attack horses.  On the other hand if they see a means of escape, they’re runners and refuse to “bay up” and even the dogs can’t catch them.  They reproduce at a rapid rate, they’ll eat virtually anything.  They destroy everything around them, and are costing millions of dollars in damages to farmers.

In fact, the Northwest is bracing for a hog invasion.  They’ll get it too, of that you can be sure.  Better journalists than the one cited above have begun to catch on.

Today, around six million feral swine run hog wild in at least 35 U.S. states, where they can grow more than five feet long and weigh more than 500 pounds. They’re adaptable creatures, capable of thriving in nearly any environment. For instance, the animals are also increasingly widespread on myriad Caribbean Islands and in Mexico, from the Baja to the Yucatán Peninsula, as well as Canada, where even deep snow and bitter cold can’t slow them down. (Read how feral hogs are moving into Canada and building “pigloos.”)

What’s more, females can begin reproducing at just eight months of age, and each can produce up to two litters of four to 12 piglets every 12 to 15 months. This allows the species to multiply rapidly and colonize new territory with unparalleled efficiency. Feral swine also ravage agricultural crops, and can harm people who corner them. But those outcomes aren’t what really worry experts.

It’s their diseases.

According to the USDA, feral swine can carry a litany of pathogens that could potentially spread to people such as leptospirosis, toxoplasmosis, brucellosis, swine influenza, salmonella, hepatitis, and pathogenic E. coli.

But there’s another concern—new diseases we don’t even know about yet.

“Swine, in general, are considered a mixing vessel species, because they’re susceptible to human viruses, like influenza viruses,” says Vienna Brown, a USDA staff biologist with the agency’s National Feral Swine Damage Management Program. “And when those get into swine,” she says, they could “create a novel influenza virus.”

“So I would argue that our risk from swine is greater than it is from other, more traditional wildlife species, in part because of their gregarious nature, our proximity to them, and just sheer numbers.”

[ … ]

Scientists are also tracking how diseases move through feral swine in the wild. Officials in Great Smoky Mountains National Park started monitoring feral swine health in 1959, but it wasn’t until 2005 that it saw its first case of pseudorabies. Like ASF, this virus is not a threat to humans, but it can cause aborted fetuses in pigs and death in other animals, such as wild raccoons and opossums and even pet cats and dogs. (Learn more about the battle to control America’s most destructive species.)

“The prevalence increased from basically zero to roughly 20 to 40 percent, depending on the year,” says William Stiver, supervisory wildlife biologist for the national park. “But it’s certainly here, and we’ve watched it sort of migrate across the park through the pig population.”

Leptospirosis, which is caused by a bacterium, has also been found in the park’s feral swine. If left untreated in people, it can cause kidney damage, meningitis, liver failure, respiratory distress, and death, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Kill them when you see them.  You benefit society when you do that.  There’s the added benefit of good eating, but make sure to cook them well.


Feral Hogs in Canada

Woman Killed by Feral Hogs Outside Texas Home

Houston-Area Suburbs Now Suffering from Feral Hogs

Hog Apocalypse in Texas

Save the Planet – Buy an AR!

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The Northwest is Bracing for a Hog Invasion

BY Herschel Smith
4 months ago

Outdoor Life.

Hunting wild hogs is great fun, and it’s a popular pursuit in many places around the country. But wild pigs themselves are a real problem for native flora and fauna. This is precisely why hogs have become a nationwide concern as they reproduce in astounding numbers and find ways to thrive in new environments.

According to a report from the Cowboy State Daily, Wyoming and Montana are currently free of wild swine. However, wildlife managers in these states are receiving reports of pigs in Colorado, North Dakota, and Utah. Landowners and hunters, meanwhile, are worried about hordes moving into Montana and Wyoming from Canada.

Alberta and Saskatchewan are already infested, which shows that cold weather and snow have little impact on the prolific pigs. If they can survive in Canada, so the thinking goes, wild hogs marching into Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming is entirely possible.

As wild hogs continue to spread throughout central Alberta, Ryan Brook, a University of Saskatchewan professor studying the pigs, says they could cause an “ecological train wreck” and bring “absolute destruction” to the native ecosystem.

We warned you and have commented before about this problem.

They reproduce faster than lethal removal can take them out, they’ll adapt to their surroundings, they’ll dig up the ecosystem to the point it looks like a rototiller came through, they’ll kill indigenous game, and they’ll come after humans too.

If you live up there, get your rifles ready.  Oh, Canada won’t let you have those.  Too bad.  If you live in the rest of the U.S., get your rifles ready.

That goes for Alaska too.  There aren’t enough bears to kill them all.

I’ve also commented on the hog problem in the South before they began to move North.

Woman Killed by Feral Hogs Outside Texas Home

Houston-Area Suburbs Now Suffering from Feral Hogs

Hog Apocalypse in Texas

Save the Planet – Buy an AR!

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Feral Hogs in Canada (and the Northern U.S.)

BY Herschel Smith
4 months, 1 week ago

Here is the report.

I say parenthetically and the Northern U.S. because an imaginary boundary line won’t stop them.

You know they’re already in the Northern states.  See, you thought that hogs were a Southern problem, an issue only Georgia, Texas, S.C., Mississippi and Louisiana had to deal with.

You’d be wrong about that.  They reproduce faster than lethal removal can take them out, they’ll adapt to their surroundings, they’ll dig up the ecosystem to the point it looks like a rototiller came through, they’ll kill indigenous game, and they’ll come after humans too.

If you live up there, get your rifles ready.  Oh, Canada won’t let you have those.  Too bad.  If you live in the rest of the U.S., get your rifles ready.

That goes for Alaska too.  There aren’t enough bears to kill them all.

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Feral Hog Fends Off Entire Wolf Pack

BY Herschel Smith
4 months, 3 weeks ago

Field & Stream has the backstory.  “A wildlife photographer named Slwomir Skukowski recently shared rare video footage of a mature wild boar fighting off a wolf pack in a Polish forest near the village of Mrzeżyno. The three-minute clip was filmed with a trail camera, and it’s amassed hundreds of thousands of views since Skukowski uploaded it to Youtube on December 13. It shows the big Eurasian boar thwarting multiple advances from at least seven wolves working in unison to bring it down.

In the video, the big hog is seen charging into the encircling wolf pack with reckless abandon. The wolves continue to approach the boar, but they never actually take it down—at least not in front of the camera. Eventually, the snorting pig scatters the canines, and they retreat to a nearby ridge before regrouping for another attack. Around the three minute mark, the wolves disperse and the clip cuts out.”

Of course, we don’t know what eventually happened, but it’s significant that one hog dispersed a pack of seven wolves, not once, but multiple times.  They are smart enough to know when there is danger of being gored by an animal that can run as fast as they can.

This is why you carry in the bush regardless of where you are.  In the Northwest it might be brown bears, but in the South it’s snakes, wild hogs and black bears.  There is danger everywhere.  Never go out in the bush without a sidearm.

Here is the video.

Here is a related video from the Southlands of the U.S.

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San Francisco’s Feral Hog Problem

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 3 months ago

Daily Dot.

The man who was mocked on Twitter in 2019 for raising concerns about feral hogs is now being defended as a modern-day prophet due to a “feral swine bomb” that is ravaging the San Francisco Bay Area.

The New York Times detailed in an article on Tuesday how feral pigs have been threatening drinking water and damaging property outside the Golden Gate City, leading many local residents to seek out their destruction.

“They are tearing up lawns, ripping through golf course fairways, threatening the drinking water and disturbing the harvests at Napa vineyards,” the Times wrote. “Many Californians want them dead.”

The issue has become so significant that legislation was introduced in California last month that would make it easier for feral swine to be hunted. While hunters are currently required to purchase a $25 “tag” in order to hunt a single pig, the bill would allow hunters to target an unlimited number of swine instead.

“In California, 56 of the state’s 58 counties have wild pigs. The swine are inflicting a mounting economic toll in Lafayette, a suburb in the East Bay, where the pig invasion seems most acute,” the Times added. “Before the pandemic the city shelled out $110,000 when pigs, rooting for grubs, churned soccer and baseball fields like a rototiller.”

The financial costs—as well as concerns over water supply contamination due to the many diseases feral swine can spread—have led residents to begin recognizing the havoc states such as Texas have long dealt with.

As we have discussed before

The environmental destruction caused by this invasive species (or combined with an escaped farm population) is extreme.  There is no more destructive wild animal in America than feral pigs.

It isn’t just the deer hunters wanting to keep pressure off of the herd.  You know why the government of West Virginia doesn’t want to decimate the feral pig population?

Because they make money off of it.

This will be fine until some little child gets gored by tusks, or crops get decimated instead of the wild pig population.  Then they’ll write stories about the out-of-control pig population in local newspapers and lament how there’s nothing that can be done to control it.

Then hunting guide companies will spring up out of nowhere to guide out-of-state hunters who want to kill feral pigs.  Just like in Texas, where they have chosen not to eradicate the population.

Yea, in Texas too, where land owners charge money for hunting feral pigs, and so they have a vested interest in having the nasty critters around.

In Georgia, entire crop fields have been rooted up and farmers put out of business.  But wait, this is the Bay area.  The water supply is nasty, golf courses and soccer fields have been rooted up, and children may one day be gored to death.

So solve the problem then.  Lethal removal works, you just have to stop trying to stop the lethal removal.  What folks have found is that the AR-15 is perfect for the job.

Oh wait.  California restricts magazine capacity and forces owners to have that bastardized grip.  Too bad.  You’ll have to suck down your nasty water, Bay people.  Or change the gun control laws.

Animals Tags:

Can You Really Kill Feral Hogs With An AR-15?

BY Herschel Smith
3 years, 5 months ago

Nina Pullano.  The actual title of her piece is Scientists: No, you cannot kill 30 to 50 feral hogs with an automatic rifle.

So while the hype raged on, Inverse turned to the science to see if McNabb’s statement had any truth to it.

Turns out an automatic rifle would simply not be an effective way to get rid of the feral pigs ravaging parts of the country. That’s according to pig experts and Clemson University researchers Shari Rodriguez and Christie Sampson.

“They’re difficult to get rid of in a way that doesn’t educate them on our methods of mitigation,” Rodriguez told Inverse at the time. If you trap and remove most of a particular group of hogs, the others will quickly learn to avoid your tricks next time. To get rid of them, you have to get rid of the entire group.

“So while you may get an animal or two [with a rifle], it’s a drop in the bucket,” Rodriguez said. “It really does nothing to decrease the population of hogs.”

“Also, because hogs are so smart, they will habituate to that method and begin avoiding areas where they think they might get shot,” she said. “It’s not a long-term, sustainable solution.”

Instead, governments need to take feral hogs into account in policies that protect livestock from carnivorous predators, the researchers said.

Hmm … and this passes for research in academia.

Okay, so we have a few things to cover, Nina, Shari and Christie.  First of all, an AR-15 isn’t an automatic rifle, at least, not unless it’s a machine gun that was registered before 1968.  No one uses that for hunting.

The rifles in question are semi-automatic, and if you’re hunting a large population that groups together, that’s the preferred method.  Furthermore, no one with any sense would prefer to have a bolt action rifle if a group of hogs enters your neighborhood and you need to protect your children.  People have indeed been killed by feral hogs, and even in the daytime hours.

The question being addressed by the researchers and you are two different questions.  You’re asking if it’s possible to kill a lot of hogs at one time with an AR-15.  Well of course it is.

At his farmhouse, Campbell goes to his gun safe.

“It will hold about 40 guns, and I’ve got about 25 in there. But I’ve got some really neat guns,” Campbell says. “I’ve got my grandfather’s .22. I have an STW. I have an AR-15. I have a Smith & Wesson .22-250.”

Some of the rifles are for deer. Campbell has many beautiful shotguns because he is an avid duck hunter. He uses the AR-15, which is essentially the military’s M16, to hunt feral hogs. We go out back, and the judge lets fly with the semiautomatic.

“I’ve got a night vision scope on it. And the hogs only come out at 2 o’clock in the morning. There are certain spots they come out at. I drive up very quietly. I’m normally only 200 yards out, and I turn on my little trusty night vision scope and I smoke ’em. All of ’em,” Campbell says. “I can shoot 30 shots in eight seconds, and I’ve killed as many as 26 out of 30 shots at night with that gun.”

The question being addressed by the researchers is one of the strategy of population control, and that’s more complicated.  What they’ve suggested, to wit, “governments need to take feral hogs into account in policies that protect livestock from carnivorous predators,” is completely infeasible, impractical and too expensive.  It also wouldn’t do anything to protect the indigenous species, protect the potable water supply, or prevent crops from being destroyed.  You do realize that all of your food comes from land where these hogs are a problem, right?  You do realize that entire crops have been destroyed and farmers run out of business because of feral hogs, right?

They eat the eggs of the sea turtle, an endangered species, on barrier islands off the East Coast, and root up rare and diverse species of plants all over, and contribute to the replacement of those plants by weedy, invasive species, and promote erosion, and undermine roadbeds and bridges with their rooting, and push expensive horses away from food stations in pastures in Georgia, and inflict tusk marks on the legs of these horses, and eat eggs of game birds like quail and grouse, and run off game species like deer and wild turkeys, and eat food plots planted specially for those animals, and root up the hurricane levee in Bayou Sauvage, Louisiana, that kept Lake Pontchartrain from flooding the eastern part of New Orleans, and chase a woman in Itasca, Texas, and root up lawns of condominiums in Silicon Valley, and kill lambs and calves, and eat them so thoroughly that no evidence of the attack can be found.

And eat red-cheeked salamanders and short-tailed shrews and red-back voles and other dwellers in the leaf litter in the Great Smoky Mountains, and destroy a yard that had previously won two “‘Yard of the Month” awards on Robins Air Force Base, in central Georgia, and knock over glass patio tables in suburban Houston, and muddy pristine brook-trout streams by wallowing in them, and play hell with native flora and fauna in Hawaii, and contribute to the near-extinction of the island fox on Santa Cruz Island off the coast of California, and root up American Indian historic sites and burial grounds, and root up a replanting of native vegetation along the banks of the Sacramento River, and root up peanut fields in Georgia, and root up sweet-potato fields in Texas, and dig big holes by rooting in wheat fields irrigated by motorized central-pivot irrigation pipes, and, as the nine-hundred-foot-long pipe advances automatically on its wheeled supports, one set of wheels hangs up in a hog-rooted hole, and meanwhile the rest of the pipe keeps on going and begins to pivot around the stuck wheels, and it continues and continues on its hog-altered course until the whole seventy-five-thousand-dollar system is hopelessly pretzeled and ruined.

So as to the question of lethal removal, here is your answer.

Lethal control works. Alaska uses aerial wolf control to manage wolf populations as well as long term hunting and trapping seasons with generous bag limits. Wolves will have dramatic impacts on moose and caribou populations if allowed to increase in numbers unchecked. Natives in western Alaska will tell you that there was never any moose in western Alaska until wolf suppression was initiated. Moose in Alaska have been expanding their range because of wolf (lethal) control. State Fish and Wildlife personnel use aircraft to control wolf populations. Abundant moose and caribou populations are the result.

Your pig problems could be managed the same way. Aerial lethal suppression coupled with an open hunting season on pigs until you achieve the numbers, in terms of managed populations, that you want.

If eradication is your goal, then lethal removal is the only option. If the State is serious, your pig problem can be solved.

Remember, countless millions of bison, packs of wolves, plains grizzles and the prairie chickens (extinct,) were removed from the great plains with single shot front-stuffers (in large part.)

The scoped AR seems IMO, to be the best platform for ground based pig control. What fun!

As long as leased hunting property owners make money on hog hunting, as long as the use of firearms in suburban areas is frowned upon, and as long as ignorant people are taught that there is any other method to deal with this invasive species, there will be a feral hog problem.

When people get serious, for example, when there isn’t enough food to go around for urbanites, they will decide that feral hogs need to be killed.  Until then, researchers are tilting at windmills.

This video shows what a scoped AR can do to feral hogs, even in daylight.

Something tells me you’ve never been in the bush before, have you Nina?

Animals Tags:

Woman Killed By Feral Hogs Outside Texas Home

BY Herschel Smith
3 years, 6 months ago

USA Today.

A woman was attacked and killed by a group of feral hogs Sunday morning outside the Southeast Texas home where she worked as a caretaker, authorities said.

Chambers County Sheriff Brian Hawthorne said in a press conference Monday that Christine Rollins, 59, arrived around 6 to 6:30 a.m. when she was attacked at the Anahuac home, located 40 miles east of Houston.

The 84-year-old woman who has been under her care for almost two years went outside and found Rollins in the front yard between her car and the front door, Hawthorne told reporters.

He said Rollins had a severe head wound and several other injuries consistent with different sized bites indicating multiple animals were involved.

[ … ]

“In my 35 years, it was one of the worst things I had ever seen,” Hawthorne said about the scene.

The coroner in neighboring Jefferson County ruled Monday that Rollins bled to death after an attack by feral hogs.

Hawthorne told reporters that feral hogs have been a problem in the county and throughout the state of Texas, however, incidents like this are extremely rare.

So rare that you are willing to risk you life to being eaten by feral hogs?  Why not carry a gun with you wherever you go?  It’s a pain, I know.  But it all comes down to mitigating high risk outcomes.

If an event is high probability and low consequence, it is at least moderate risk, and may be high risk because of the high probability.  Risk = probability X consequences.  If an event is low probability but high consequence (as loss of life would certainly be), it is certainly of moderate risk, at may be high risk because of the high consequences.

That’s risk analysis 101.

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