"Not only are feral hogs a costly nuisance to agricultural operations and wildlife habitats, but they are increasingly finding their way into urban areas and destroying residents' yards, public parks and golf courses," Staples said. "On my ranch in East Texas, I have eliminated a number of hogs and I am asking Texans around the state to step up and join the county challenge to learn about feral hogs and how best to legally hunt and trap them in their area. These hogs, which number in the millions and are capable of breeding twice a year, wreak havoc on property and also can pose a health threat to humans through disease and automobile accidents."

TDA works with the Texas AgriLife Extension Service to reduce the number of feral hogs in Texas, and in turn, save Texas landowners millions of dollars. Participants in educational programs on feral hog management reported a savings of $1.7 million in the past year. Additionally, feral hog management efforts in just five months in 2010 resulted in further savings of $1.58 million in damages averted, reflecting a conservative estimated return of $20 in savings for every $1 invested.

Billy Higginbotham, Texas AgriLife Extension Wildlife Specialist, says feral hog damage can be managed and significantly reduced. Through vigilance and by working together, both urban and rural landowners can initiate efforts at first signs of feral hog damage, thereby making a noticeable difference. 

The Texas AgriLife Extension Service provides landowners information on the best feral hog management practices available. Landowners are encouraged to call their local AgriLife Extension Agent for information on feral hog control measures.

For questions regarding your local county's participation in this the statewide county challenge, contact your county office.