Feral hogs

Feral hogs trapped in Coryell County in December wait in a holding pen.

LAMPASAS — Researchers from the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, Texas A&M AgriLife Research, Lampasas River Watershed Partnership and the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board are joining forces to educate participants on the dangers of feral hogs at a workshop Oct. 16 in Lampasas.

Patrick Flanigan, a wildlife damage management technician for the USDA/Wildlife Services Department, responds to reports from landowners about feral hog damage.

He said $20,000 to $50,000 in feral hog damage is reported in Lampasas every year.

“Most of that is due to crop and pasture land damage. The feral hogs not only damage the crops, but fields have to be re-leveled, hay bales have to be re-stacked, fences need repair and they prey on ranchers’ livestock such as sheep and goats.”

Wild pigs, also known as opportunistic omnivores, are scavengers that feed on animal and plant matter and reportedly eat approximately 5 percent of their body weight daily.

“Feral hogs and the destruction they cause are fast becoming the bane of all Central Texas landowners, no matter what their interests are,” said Dan Gaskins, workshop coordinator and AgriLife Extension wildlife and fisheries science assistant in Gatesville. “So the workshop topics we’ll offer should be of interest to anybody with ties to the land, be they agricultural producers, hunters, recreational property owners or even homeowners who are being adversely affected by feral hogs.”

Lisa Prcin, Texas A&M AgriLife research associate, said various management approaches for feral hog control have been outlined by watershed officials.

“Feral hogs were identified by the Lampasas River Watershed Partnership as one of the primary concerns as a contributor of bacteria to the watershed in the Lampasas River Watershed Protection Plan,” Prcin said.

The workshop is from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 16 at Grace Fellowship Church, 2974 U.S. Highway 281, Lampasas. Individual preregistration is $15 per person by Friday and $20 per person thereafter.

The Texas Department of Agriculture will honor five continuing education credits consisting of 0.5 credit for integrated pest management, 1.5 credits for laws and regulations and 3.0 general education credits to current private applicator license holders.

To RSVP, call Prcin 254-774-6008 or email at lprcin@brctamus.edu.

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