Pest Alert – Wild Hogs
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Do we have wild hogs in Henderson County? Apparently so! I have received several images via email taken from game cameras in the county since 2020. I have visited areas of suspected hog damage as well.
The Feral Swine Problem
Feral hogs can be found in almost every county in North Carolina. Feral swine can carry diseases that can be potentially hazardous to livestock operations. Feral swine feeding and rooting in forests and meadows is highly destructive to native wildlife and plant ecosystems. Their damage is estimated at $1.5 billion annually in the U.S.
In Henderson County the feral swine problem is just starting. The population of feral swine is relatively low right now. However this could change rapidly.
Wild pigs are not native to the Americas. Also known as feral swine, the animal is an Old World species. The first wild pigs in the United States originated in the 1500’s to what is now the southeastern U.S. by Spanish explorer, Hernando DeSoto.
Later, livestock swine were brought to North America by European settlers. Many years later, Eurasian wild boar were introduced for hunting. Eurasian wild boar and escaped domestic livestock pigs found each other in the wild and interbreeding occurred.
What To Do
If you have wild hogs on your property causing damage, you can either trap or kill the animals. See the NC Department of Wildlife for hunting regulations. Currently, feral swine are classified as non-game animals, with no closed hunting season on private lands and no bag limits. All persons hunting feral swine at any time must have a valid hunting license or must be exempt from having a license.
The NC Feral Swine Taskforce (NCFSTF) wants to hear about any sightings, damage, and harvests of feral swine across the state to better understand where feral swine live and what impacts they are having here you seeing feral swine or their damage. Please report wild hog damage to me and at the NC Feral Swine Project.