SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Feral hogs are a year-round issue in Missouri. In this Ozarks Tonight, Jenifer Abreu talked to Francis Skalicky with the Missouri Department of Conservation about why feral hogs are an issue and how people can help eliminate them.
Skalicky says feral hogs cause financial burdens on landowners and farmers due to their rooting, wallowing, and feeding behaviors that can erode soil, reduce water quality, and damage agricultural crops and hay fields.
The Missouri Department of Conservation estimated the damage to be at more than $1.5 billion 10 years ago in the United States and estimates that number to be much higher than that today.
Feral hogs are hard to eradicate in part because they have a population growth rate of about 166% per year and can breed any time of year.
Shooting them, Skalicky says, makes the situation worse because the hogs will scatter and be wary of bait-sites.
Feral hogs can spread the disease to humans, pets, and livestock.
The Conservation Department can set up and operate traps on landowners’ properties if hogs are reported on the property.
If you see a feral hog, you can report it to 573-522-4115, extension 3296.
For more information on feral hogs, click here.