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Not again.......! Feral Hog Control in East Texas

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by Flintknapper, May 13, 2009.

  1. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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  2. Flintknapper

    Flintknapper Member

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    Rant on.....

    I swear these pigs will be the death of me!

    Trying to get ready for deer season here, running a little behind. I have a wooded area not far behind my home that is a natural funnel for deer and other game. Each year I plant a small food plot (about an acre and half that I have cleared) right in the middle of an otherwise forested area.

    I heavily plant that area in peas and have always had good success attracting and holding deer around that small plot and wooded area.... even though I have much more acreage to hunt.

    Got the plot all planted a couple of weeks ago. Got a nice rain on it, the peas germinated and began to sprout.

    (Enter the pigs): Well....literally overnight....a sounder of pigs (about 18-20) descended upon the plot and managed to denude about 80% of it. What wasn't eaten....was trampled into one big muddy mess. My Brother and his eldest Son happened to be up visiting...so I put my nephew on a mission to try to kill a hog, which he did. He actually walked right up on the group when going to his stand and was able to kill a sow.

    Thinking that would scare the rest of the group off for awhile....I replanted the area. No pigs for a few days, until last night...when again they came in and hoovered up all the peas I had replanted. Arrrghhhhh!

    Usually, I just kill feral hogs out of necessity (we have property that they destroy). Been trying to control their numbers for over 25 years with no real emotional aspect to it. Just something that has to be done.

    But this group has made me angry, not something easily done...as I am a fairly even tempered person.

    However, a little 'retribution' may be in store for this group.

    Rant off......
     
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  3. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Happened to me on a smaller scale, planted about a quarter acre of seed I got from TSC for food plots, is about 40 percent clover IIRC. Deer love clover. The pigs came in and plowed it all up. :rolleyes: Didn't take 'em a week. Guess they liked the soft, disced up ground. :rolleyes: I just gave up on the food plot idea and keep the feeder full.
     
  4. Tinybob

    Tinybob Member

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    We had a group move into our lease last week. They knocked over one guys feeder and he got them on camera. As dry as it is here they're having to move for water. The area they moved into has a pond, so I figure that's why they are staying. With the cold front coming later this week I hope to declare war on them!
     
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  5. WrongHanded
    • Contributing Member

    WrongHanded Contributing Member

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    Flintknapper,

    I have not read the entirety of this thread. Nowhere close in fact. So forgive me if this is not feasible for one reason or another.

    It seems that the pea patch is a good way to get a lot of pigs together at one time. With some night vision optic and a suppressor on a semi-auto rifle, does it seem likely you could take the majority of a group at one time? Is it possible to work with your neighbors to manage the problem in this manner? It's obviously not a permanent solution, but could an on going collaboration of this nature help mitigate the damage they're causing, by keeping the numbers low in the immediate area?

    Again, forgive if this has been discussed already. Reading your last post reminded my of a documentary I saw some time ago on the topic, and it seemed night vision scopes and suppressors were used. It sounds pretty awful having to deal with such a destructive pest for so long.
     
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  6. Flintknapper

    Flintknapper Member

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    ^^^^^^^^^ Expand for replies
     
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  7. BigBore44

    BigBore44 Member

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    In an ideal world your idea would probably work....to a degree. The problem is, where Flynt lives, he’s surrounded by great hog habitat. He could kill every hog out of that sounder and in a week or two, he’d have another group show up.

    Here’s another problem, the more you shoot (at hogs), the more deer you’ll push away. It’s a conundrum for sure. I’ve even killed a pig out of a group and had the same group come back an hour later. And then I killed another one. Headed out of the woods and 30 minutes later realized I’d left my wallet back at the bait site. It was dark but I needed my wallet. Walked back to the bait site and there were pigs already back at the feeder. When they want to be somewhere, they’ll come back even when pushed away by gunfire.
     
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  8. Flintknapper

    Flintknapper Member

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    Went and sat on a hog stand for little while yesterday. Got there about 6 p.m. and stayed until 9 p.m., no hogs...but wasn't really expecting to see any unless I wanted to stay later (which I did not). With a bright moon up early in the evening...the hogs will often wait until the moon sets and all is dark again before moving. But you never know...so I put in a little time in on stand anyway.

    At least it was nice and cool sitting there. The mosquitoes were not much of a problem (thankfully). The moonbeams filtering down through the trees was pleasant to look at. All very peaceful...just listening to the night sounds (crickets, coyotes howling, frogs from the nearby pond, the occasional gray fox screeching).

    Even when not successful with the hogs, I still enjoy the solitude of the woods at night.

    I did find this medium sized Sow in a snare this morning, so all of my efforts weren't for naught.

    Sow%20Snared1_zps1vhlowlx.jpg
     
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  9. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    If we didn't enjoy being out in nature, we wouldn't do it. Just killing something doesn't happen often enough to keep one's interest. :D

    I have noticed the skeeters have let up a bit. I always take my thermocell, though. I hate skeeters.

    How do you keep deer out of those snares? I've never actually snared anything. I've thought about it over the years. I catch deer in the hog trap all the time, don't like to, but they get in there on occasion and I let 'em out.
     
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  10. Flintknapper

    Flintknapper Member

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    I have thermacell in my Daughter's box stand and it does do a good job provided there isn't too much wind. In the open 2 man ladder stands it's more of a challenge. But all in all....I do recommend them.

    I've never caught a deer in a snare set (keeping fingers crossed). But I am very careful where and how I set them. Snares obviously are non-discriminate and the type I use incorporate a 'cam type' locking device which does NOT relax. So...anything you catch in it (if around the neck) is going to be dispatched by the snare.

    I put 'deer stops' on the main cable so the loop can not close down smaller than 5"-6". That way if the loop gets knocked off the set or somehow a deer (or other small animal) gets their foot or leg in it, they will not be caught.

    Many of my sets (for hogs) are at fence crossings. By placing the loop of the snare on the bottom wire you pretty much avoid catching about 50% of the deer right there, as most prefer to jump a fence. I also pile sticks and limbs around the set to help 'funnel' the hogs to it. Deer dislike the 'crowding' this creates....while hogs ignore it.

    I also do my best to scout out a potential snare site. I look for evidence that hogs are using a trail and not deer. I use my game cameras to confirm that it is hog 'traffic' and not deer traffic on a trail. Hogs like the thick stuff and will readily push through it. Deer MUCH prefer taking the path of least resistance.

    I've caught coyotes in snares set for hogs, but never a deer (yet). Actually, I'm surprised I haven't caught someones 'Hog Dog' yet. We still have folks around here that seem to think they can run their dogs whenever and where-ever they like.

    You just have to be really careful when setting snares so you have the best chance of catching your target animal and avoid catching non-target animals.

    When properly utilized, snares can be an effective tool. But they ARE non-discriminate, so if used irresponsibly... can cause unnecessary trouble for other wildlife. Snares are my 'next to the last' choice of tools to combat hogs, but they do have their place.
     
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  11. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    On a windy tripod stand, the skeeters will go to the opposite side of your body from the thermocell. I got to thinkin' I'd buy a second one and wear one on either side. :D I never did, moved here and I have a box blind now. It does work in the tree stand, trees break the wind pretty well. When I fire that thing up in that box blind, in short order I see 'em coming up off the floor and heading for the ports to escape. It's really cool to watch. Within 15 minutes, all is quiet, the blind is cleared of the little devils. :D The guy that invented that thing should get a Nobel prize. :D
     
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  12. 444

    444 Member

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    Question:
    If the scavengers can make a carcass all but disappear in 24-48 hours, why do you go through all the effort to haul the carcass to a "bone yard" ? Seems like that would be a heckava lot of work to go through in the wee hours of the morning for something that is just going to almost dissolve in a day or two.
     
  13. Flintknapper

    Flintknapper Member

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    Two main reasons:

    1. Locale. Most of these hogs are taken at a chosen bait or trap site. Leaving a carcass there can disrupt visitation of the other hogs I am trying to kill. Coyotes are actually not much of a problem, as they will remove as large a piece of the animal as they can and retire to another location to eat it. They don't sit over the carcass and consume it as the buzzards do. The scavenger birds (primarily buzzards) can number upwards of 50-60 birds, so its quite a gathering.

    2. Visibility. By placing the carcass in an open area...the scavenger birds will very quickly locate it. If I were to leave it in the pine forest, then only when the carcass began to decompose (and emit an odor)...would the buzzards be able to locate it. As for Coyotes, they commonly hunt the pastures for field mice and rabbits, so by placing the carcass right in their normal hunting area, it is found more quickly by them as well.

    Notes:

    Any hog carcass disposed of at night is first 'available' to Coyotes, Fox, Possum and even other hogs. The Coyotes may or may not find it the first night. But they usually get first crack at it. The opposite is true if the carcass is left in the daytime. Then the buzzards usually consume most of it.

    Buzzards obviously feed only in the daytime, but once they find the carcass... will strip it to the bone with amazing efficiency. I would say the average 'wake' of buzzards (where I live) is about 50 birds, but can be more than that.

    Believe me.....that many large birds create quite a ruckus. You don't want that going on at or near a spot you are trying to hunt, regardless the relatively short duration.

    Nonetheless, your question is good one and I suspect in some settings it would work just fine to leave the carcass where it lays.
     
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  14. ponchh

    ponchh Member

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    On the news last night- ARKANSAS GAME & FISH wants to poison feral hogs with a poison called KAPUT. Don't know anymore than that, didn't give much detail. Military Base's here have been asking hunters to just shoot them and let em lay for years.
     
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  15. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    I think that's probably Warfrin which is a blood thinner, rat poison that TP&W wanted to use and with the help of hunting lobbies, got trashed. I am no in favor of poisons in the wild...period, case closed, not even for hogs. There's more critters in the woods than hogs even if I wanted to eradicate hogs, which I don't. But, we've had a whole thread discussion of this, already, and it ain't happening in Texas, so I'm good. :D

    Besides, if Arkansas kills off all the hogs, they'll have to change the name of UA from "razorbacks" to "cottontails" or something. :D
     
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  16. ponchh

    ponchh Member

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    Cottontails would be way generous
     
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  17. Tinybob

    Tinybob Member

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    They should look at the use of poison corn by farmer being outlawed several years back. The reason for that was poisoning non target animals in crop fields. Good reason NOT to use poison in any poison in any population control effort.

    I think the poison used was warfarin. The shelled corn was sprayed with a poisoning liquid with red die in it for identification.
     
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  18. GSPKurt

    GSPKurt Member

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    Flintknapper

    I sent you a PM.
     
  19. FN in MT

    FN in MT Member

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    What a mess You TX guys have with the hogs! As bothersome as our damned Prairie Dogs eating all our hay crops, but fifty times LARGER. We have the same situation...shoot the heck out of them and a week later it's like You weren't even there. All back again. The danged hogs reproduce even faster.
     
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  20. Flintknapper

    Flintknapper Member

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    Yes, much the same.

    But there is some redemption...in that we can eat the hogs.

    Can't imagine a good Prairie Dog recipe. ;)
     
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  21. Owen

    Owen Moderator Emeritus

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    Is there anyone in this thread in the Eagle Pass / Del Rio TX area that would like to take on a mentee? I'd like to shoot some pigs, but I have no idea how to even get started as far as getting permission, etc.
     
  22. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    I suspect they are like squirrel and are a lot of effort for the amount of food provided.
    http://hotspotoutdoors.com/forums/topic/117461-prairie-dog-recipes/

    Some people really like them.
     
  23. Flintknapper

    Flintknapper Member

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    ^^^^^ Yeah, but then 'some people' like stepping on broken glass. ;)

    I dunno Brian, maybe there is a recipe that requires copious amounts of bacon and beer be used. I guess that might make them palatable.

    My rule of thumb for determining if something is fit to eat....is to look and see if there is a Cajun/Creole recipe for it. If not....then I'm gonna pass for sure. Those folks will eat pretty much anything.
     
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  24. der Teufel

    der Teufel Member

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    Hmmm, Prairie Dog Boudin, anyone?
     
  25. Tinybob

    Tinybob Member

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    I'd try it once.
     
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