Winter is an excellent time to implement control of feral hogs. Natural food sources are usually less abundant during this time so baiting can be more effective, improving control efforts. The most common control methods are trapping and hunting, both effective ways to reduce the feral hog population. However, finding a good hunting location can be difficult and disposing of live feral hogs can be an issue. For those interested in these types of feral hog recreational opportunities, there are a few resources available for Oklahoma and Texas hunters and trappers.
The Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry (ODAFF) has created the Oklahoma Feral Swine Directory to connect landowners wanting control of feral hogs with hunters and trappers interested in providing assistance. Landowners experiencing feral hog problems can complete an application to be added to a listing providing contact information for prospective hunters and trappers. Landowners are listed by county without divulging the location of the property. It is up to the individual landowner to decide whether or not to allow a specific hunter or trapper onto their property. Landowners can download the application at www.ag.ok.gov/ais/feralswinelandowner.pdf.
Likewise, hunters and trappers can fill out a similar application and be added to a listing that allows landowners to contact them for assistance. Hunters and trappers can download this application at www.ag.ok.gov/ais/feralswinehunter.pdf. Both residents and non-residents of Oklahoma can apply to be on the hunter and trapper listing. It is not necessary for hunters and trappers to be enrolled on this listing to contact landowners enrolled on the previously mentioned landowner listing. For more information on the program and to see a listing of landowners, hunters and trappers already on the Oklahoma Feral Swine Directory, visit www.ag.ok.gov.
Trapping and selling live feral hogs has the potential for significant revenues. There are, however, laws and regulations controlling live feral hog movement. The Texas Animal Health Commission regulates transportation of live feral hogs in the state. Once trapped, live male feral hogs may be sold to an approved holding facility, approved slaughter facility or authorized hunting preserve. Female feral hogs may only be sold to a holding facility or slaughter facility. Hunting preserves purchasing male feral hogs must be licensed by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. For a listing of approved holding facilities in Texas, visit www.tahc.state.tx.us/animal_health/feral_swine.html. Approved holding facilities are listed by county and include contact information. For approved holding facilities in Oklahoma, contact ODAFF.
Feral hogs pose significant management issues for many landowners in Oklahoma and Texas. The information provided at these websites will help landowners, hunters and trappers control feral hog populations throughout the two states.