A few weeks ago a buddy of mine and I got a call saying my son-in-law and his friends needed some help getting a hog out of the woods. The dogs had chased the hogs a long ways from the boat, so far that the hunting party needed help packing the hogs out of the woods.
My buddy and I hook up with the hunting party, we then spend the next 30 minutes or so wondering through the woods to where the hogs were at. The two hogs were separated by maybe 200 yards or so.
When we arrived at one of the hogs, something had killed it, and ate part of it. The wild hog had been tied up for only around 4an hour or so.
The next week I called a local wildlife biologist and told him what happened. The wildlife biologist said with multiple bite marks on the neck, the attacker was probably either a coyote or a feral dog.
Need a good source of renewable food after SHTF, look no further then the wild hog. Wild hogs have invaded all of the lower 48 states, Texas alone has an estimated 1.5 million feral hogs.
The problem is, the hogs are mean, can be difficult to trap, can injure or kill hunting dogs, and can be difficult to transport.
Trapping Wild Hogs
Hog traps are only limited by your imagination. They can include anything from a box trap to a pen trap.
The usual hog trap is made out of welded angle iron, and is 4 feet wide and 8 feet long. The door is spring loaded so that when a hog enters the trap, the door closes behind them. Some traps are rigged so that the door opens while the hog is rooting around the edge. The hog pushes the door open, the hog goes into the trap, and the door closes behind the hog.
Hog traps are not that difficult to build, all you really need is the materials, wire cutters, maybe some boards, hammer, nails,,,,.
Most people use corn to bait the traps.
In some cases hogs will not enter the trap. When that happens, wire the door open for a couple of weeks so the hogs can go in and out of the trap.
Its post SHTF, you and your family need something to eat, so the yall head out to a local river. The dogs are let loose, a few minutes later the dogs corner up a 200 pound boar hog.
The boar hog is loaded in the boat and brought back home.
A pen is hastily assembled out of whatever materials you can find.
The boar hog is put in the hen, and the leg ties taken off. Since the pen is made out of fence, the boar hog rams the fence, breaks the wire loose, then the hog runs off.
Sounds unlikely? Well, that is what happened when my son-in-law bought a boar hog home.
In this case the dogs were waiting outside the pen in case the hog got out.
Keep in mind this is not a friendly domesticated hog, this is a wild boar hog that will use its tusk to tear flesh off the bone.
The dogs caught the hog, and the hog was put into a stronger pen.
Lessons learned, wild hogs are less likely to run into the side of the pen if there is something blocking the hogs view. In other words, if the hog can not see what is on the other side, chances are the hog will not ram the side of the pen.
Hogs are stronger then they look. All it took was one hit to the fence for the wire to tear loose.
So what happens next
The wild boar hog will have its nuts removed. This will improve the taste of the meat. Commercial pork processors remove the nuts from male piglets. Most people who eat pork do not know it.
During the great depression of the 1930s, whitetail deer and wild turkey were almost hunted to extinction in certain areas around the USA. From what I understand, the East Texas wild turkey was hunted to extinction levels, and birds had to be imported from other parts of the nation to restore the population. The same thing happened to the whitetail deer population in East Texas. The one animal that does not seem to be affected from hunting is the wild hog. Even though the majority of the 50 states has an open season on wild hogs, their population is still thriving.
One of the big differences between wild turkeys, whitetail deer and wild hogs – is the amount of off spring that can be produced. Deer and turkeys reproduce once a year. Wild hogs are like rats, they reproduce all the time.
Wild Turkeys – If you harvest 3 wild turkeys out of a flock, they will not be replaced until the following year. Female wild turkeys can lay about 12 eggs at a time. Survival rate of the turkey poults (chicks) is determined by a lot of factors – such as, if there are fire ants close to the nest, and the raccoon population. Fire ants will attack, kill and eat the turkey chicks. Studies have shown that the higher the raccoon the population in a given area, the lower the survival rate of egg laying animals. Whether its ducks or turkeys, raccoons will raid the nest and steal the eggs.
Whitetail Deer – Whitetail deer reproduce once a year, and the doe may only drop 2 fawns at a time. Out of those 2 fawns, only 1 may survive into adulthood. Several factors help determine yawn survival rate – fire ants (yet again), wild hog population, coyote population, wolf population, bears,,,,,,. If a wild hog finds a newborn fawn, they may kill and eat the fawn. Hogs are omnivores, meaning they eat just about anything and that includes yawns. Does will not start reproducing until they are 1.5 – 2.5 years of age
Yesterday evening while heading to the woods for a hog hunting trip, an interesting conversation came up between everyone in the truck – “where will you be hunting at this deer season?” My son and I are on a deer lase, so we have a place to hunt. But the other 2 people in the truck do not have a place where they can not. They have to rely on the kindness of other people to give them permission to hunt on their land.
This got me to thinking, where would you hunt in a post long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI situation? If you do not have a place to hunt now, what makes you think your going to have one after the fact?
A lot of survivalist plan on “bugging out to the wilderness in a long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI situation. So having a place to go and a place to hunt might go hand in hand.
If you do not own land, not on a deer lease (which grants you a legal right to be on the land), don’t have friends with benefits, or know where the public hunting land is, where will you hunt at?
Survivalist camp bug out location
Private Property – Owing land in a rural area might the ideal situation for most survivalist, but for a lot of people, is just not realistic. The majority of the people live and work in the city. So if they own property in a rural area, they have to maintain the house they live in, and maintain a remote camp.
There are a lot of considerations for having rural private property – what kind of disasters is the area prone to, how far from your home is the location, is the land farmable, what is the source of drinking water, is the area secure, what types of wild animals are in the area, how easy is it to access the land,,,,,,, just to name a few.
Once the land is obtained, is it close enough to your home to maintain a workable farm, how much gear and supplies are going to be stored there,,,,,.
For hunting considerations, oak trees, maybe a field for crops, and some kind of water source would be nice to have. Der do not need a “lot” of land to live. Their related to the goat, as in deer are grazers – they just walk along and “graze” off foliage. Deer, squirrels and wild hogs love acorns. So having oak trees on the property is a prime consideration.
One of the benefits of having private property, permanent structures can be built and supplies can be stockpiled. But anytime supplies are stockpiled, then comes the question of security.
Even though deer season does not start for another 2 months, my daughter and I made a trip to the lease to take a look at the feeders and stands.
The good news, all of the stands were still up. If we get some strong winds – like from a hurricane – sometimes the box stands will blow over. To get them back up, you need either 3 or 4 men, or a tractor with a boom pole on it. The last time I had to stand one of the box stands up, we had 4 men with us.
The bad news, one of the feeders had been knocked over – I guess by wild hogs – and damaged pretty bad. The motor housing has been broke off, and the plastic drum was bent. This feeder will be brought back to the camp and replaced. The legs will be taken off and put on another drum, and the motor replaced.
What happens – the hogs get tired of waiting on the feeder to throw the corn out, or the battery will go dead,,, but either way, the hogs will hit the legs of the feeder until they knock it over. When the feeder hits the ground, the lid comes off and the corn spills out. The hogs then feast on the spilled corn.
Another one of the feeders – the motor would not test. Meaning that I held the test button in for a few seconds, let go, and the motor would not spin up.
The last feeder had a bent leg, so it was not filled up with corn. The timber company had been in there cutting some trees and the leg looks like it had been bumped by a machine. Next weekend my kids and I will go back out to the lease and bring 3 pipes with us to replace the legs.
One of the stands had 2 legs pull off of it last deer season. While my daughter and I were out there, we measured the legs. Next weekend we will bring the 2 replacement legs with us. This time, instead of using just nails, I’am going to use some drywall screws as well.
This is not the first time hogs have damaged one of our feeders. Back in August of 2008 hogs knocked one of the feeders over and broke the housing where the leg attached. When the leg broke off, there was a hole in the drum 4 – 5 inches across, which ruined the drum.
It is believed that hogs were first introduced into the United States by Hernando de Soto in or around 1539. Recent excavations from some of Hernando de Sotos’ encampments in Florida have discovered jaw bones of pigs and other swine bone fragments.
Hogs are a true omnivore, meaning that they will eat almost anything. The diet of a wild hog can include grubs, worms, termites, acorns – anything that the hog can get its mouth on, its likely to eat. There are even stories of wild hogs killing and eating new born deer.
Several factors have contributed to a recent surge in hog populations.
1. For some reason, several states have passed laws prohibiting butchers from processing wild hogs. If a hunter kills a hog, and brings that hog to a butcher, in some states the butcher will not be able to process the meat. This has helped prevent an active hog hunting community of hunters from developing. There are a group of people that hunt hogs, but not to the degree of deer hunters. Most people that hunt hogs process the meat theirselves. This is something that not everyone wants to do.
2. More deer hunters are using feeders. In some cases, deer hunters keep their feeders going all year long, and as a result, supply the hogs with a year round supply of food.
3. Lack of large natural predators to keep the wild hog population in check.