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Wild hogs dine on wildlife food

Well, here we are with nothing to hunt! There may be a crow shoot come up someday after a rain or even a predator (coyotes, bobcats, etc.) hunt.

A problem beginning to surface here in northeast Louisiana is hogs. As most of you know, a hog is really a unique animal. Good to eat, hard to control when left unchecked.

During my tenure at “the Great School of Minds” (Northeast Louisiana University) seeking a “sheepskin” of bachelor qualification, one animal science teacher often made reference that “homo sapiens” could follow hogs and eat what they ate without causing illness to said homo sapiens.

Another trait was that a hog could revert back to the wild very quickly. “Quickly” here refers to our local hog problem. Many people will see a hog while hunting deer and not shoot for fear of ruining a hunt. Fact of the matter is, the hog is benefiting from all our deer management practices, especially our food plots and feeders.

The properties I have been deer hunting on are, as of this writing, hog-free. But not to be un-plagued, we have black bear. I really think I would rather have the hogs because the local black bear is on the federal endangered species list. At least we could shoot pigs and hogs that dined on our food sources. Hogs can be trapped, bears can't.

As I write this, I know of no control today of either. Louisiana is in the process of instigating a local landowner/farmer night hunting trial. I don't know how this will work. We should see some innovative night hunting equipment surface.

My personal thoughts from my old law enforcement days would be reverse psychology. The condensed law would read: Night hunting only with weapons of .50 caliber BMC and smaller, limit of two per night with possession of a $50 license. I guarantee you, you won't be able to be in a hog area during the day!

Trapping and shooting is a start. Hogs may really ruin a good deer-hunting place.

I am aware that we are right smack dab in high gear farming. Get by your hunting area and put your game camera out. See what's happening on your place.

Don't forget your hunting leases. Now is the time to replenish salt and mineral licks. A common ol' mineral block for livestock will do as well as common salt. This will make a difference!

Food plots: Many should be maintained now. Whether you are planting soybeans, corn or other fall foodstuffs, like anything else, it must get done. One timely plant is sunflowers for birds. My last venture with these seed made for a good bird hunt. Be reminded that the “smaller black” varieties work better for birds. Most of these plants are of the 90- and 110-day variety, so timely planting will coincide with opening day of said bird season.

Your local farm supply should be able to order these seed and advise you about a herbicide that might be most helpful in weed and/or grass control. I wish I could have visited with local farmers while in Argentina last year about their sunflowers which were grown for a commercial market. I'll bet they were Roundup Ready.

Don't forget your camp. Get your bedding, bring it home for a good cleaning and airing out. Remove all food; don't leave anything something else can eat. Carry some rat poison that works by various methods. Hey, we'll be back hunting before you know it.

If you get a chance, take a kid fishing or hunting. For that matter, take anyone. One doesn't have to kill to enjoy our outdoors. Some of the best meals and friends are made “at the camp.”

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