Archive for July 14th, 2015

Hunting Cannot Control Feral Swine

Tuesday, July 14th, 2015
Feral big mama sow.

Feral big mama sow.

This is Passport to Texas

Hunting is not an ideal means of control for feral swine.

09- Although they’re very good to eat, and we have very liberal means and methods to take feral hogs, it’s just not proven effective as a control measure.

Approximately 2.5 million feral hogs roam Texas; wildlife biologist, Donnie Frels, researches controls for feral hogs at the Kerr Wildlife Management Area.

11- They have been documented in just about every county in Texas, although we see higher densities in eastern Texas, along the coast, and in South Texas.

Frels is among a group of researchers studying the use of sodium nitrite in a bait matrix as a control method. The compound is toxic to swine as it reduces their blood’s ability to carry oxygen.

13- We began investigating sodium nitrite as a potential toxicant back about 2010; since that time we’ve come a long way in bait development.

We need up to 70% control of the swine annually to hold the population stable from one year to the next. Frels says the ultimate goal of his study is to develop bait that is economical and environmentally safe.

10-We would like it in a pelleted form that a landowner or land manager could utilize themselves, within a specific feeder, so that it doesn’t provide access to non-targets.

Commercial availability is still several years away.

The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.