Get a group of hunters together these days and someone is bound to ask about hog hunting. Feral hogs continue to expand their territory across the state but they are not so wide spread that many of the hunters encounter them much. Feral hogs are domestic hogs that have gotten lose and have reverted back to their wild side. Hunters for the most part love the opportunity to have another specie to hunt but most landowners and farmers hate them because of the damage they do do the land and crops.

Feral hogs I believe will be viewed as a curse if and when they establish themselves like they have in places like Texas. I can wait to have this hunting opportunity available to me. I know that Caswell County has been having an issue with them and the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission has contracted with trappers to help remove them. Johnston County has had them for a number of years and limited hunting opportunities are available through Johnston Community College Howell Woods. I did a story a while back about Harnett County and the problems they were having.

A recent news story in the Salisbury Post reports on how one was struck in Rowan County;

Kenneth Miller was watching television in his house at 13360 Old Beatty Ford Road — about a half-mile from Emmanuel Church Road — shortly after 8:30 p.m. Sunday when he heard a crash.

“It sounded like one car hitting another car,” Miller said. “I was expecting the worst.”What he got instead of a car crash was a wild hog. A darn big one.

Miller said Kelly Barringer, 43, of Albemarle, was driving a Chevrolet Suburban along Old Beatty Ford Road and struck and killed the wild boar after it lumbered into the road in front of him.

“He told me he saw it a split-second before he hit it,” Miller said.

It took Barringer a ways to stop. He turned around and returned. Miller hustled from his house, the first to arrive with a flashlight.

He approached the dead boar from its backside. The creature was stretched out in the roadway, steam still rising from its hide.

“I thought it was a bear at first,” Miller said.

Eventually, he and a handful of others investigated the creature more closely and saw it was a boar.

A very, very distant relation to Piglet.

Miller said he stepped the creature off and determined it was 6-feet long from the tip of its tail to the top of its snout. He estimated its weight at at least 300 pounds.

“I weigh 200 pounds and I’ll bet it’s twice as big as I am,” Miller said.

Where it came from is anybody’s guess. Miller said his beagle has been barking at something in the dark on recent nights.

He wondered if the dog was yapping at the hog hiding in the woods, doing whatever it is that 300-plus-pound hogs do.

Miller said he was certain the hog wasn’t a domestic animal that escaped from a neighboring pen. It had two tusks, Miller said, though one had apparently been broken off in its collision with the Suburban.

“It was as wild as could be,” Miller said of the animal.

Tommy Rainey is another resident of the area and showed up at the accident site with a camera. He said the Suburban’s collision with the boar did considerable damage to the front left side of the vehicle, knocking a hole in its radiator.

I suspect that those who want the opportunity to hunt hogs will have a number of options in the next few years as the population explodes. I’m also certain some of us will be unhappy with the damage these critters will cause and the impact on native species and flora.

Post by Dan McLaughlin AKA Moose