Controlling the Unwanted Guest

Kevin, our ranch manager's name appears on my I-Phone screen (I always take his call). 

Me: Hello

Kevin: Did you come by 919 and pick up a mule (ranch vehicle)?

Me: Yep, I'm taking 'em back over to the big barn. I'm tired of the wasps and rats messing them up. I saw your truck... you hog hunting?

Kevin: Yea, I got a 150 pound boar in the trap.

Me: You need any help getting him in the trailer?

Kevin: I 'bout got it done. You heading back over here?

Me: Yea, I'll see ya in 10. 

 

Feral hogs are wildlife's equivalent of the house guest that will never leave... they eat all of your food, leave a mess and never get the hint that it's time to go home. We can't get rid of all the feral hogs... just control 'em. They have no benefit for ranchers and to be honest they can cause all kinds of headaches. They compete directly with livestock as well as other wildlife for food. These pesky animals root around and tramp on the land causing damage to agricultural crops. Feral hogs destabilize wetland areas, springs, creeks and tanks by their wallowing and rooting. While they are not active predators, wild hogs may prey on fawns and kid goats. They can also destroy and consume eggs of ground nesting birds, such as turkey and quail. If that's not enough, feral hogs can transmit some diseases to livestock and wildlife. The diseases can be detrimental to a rancher's herd, therefore a rancher must control the feral hog population. The hogs have relatively poor eyesight but make up for it with their keen sense of hearing and smell.  Therefore, the best way to control them is by using traps. We keep traps on the ranch. Kevin and several of his buddies are expert hog hunters.

 

By the way... did I mention... they aren't very cute? 

By the way... did I mention... they aren't very cute?