YOUR TEXAS AGRICULTURE MINUTE
Getting to the root of the wild pig problem
By Gary Joiner
Wild pigs are not just a Texas problem. Thirty-five states are battling the feral swine.
But Texas has the most, and the problem keeps growing.
Recent research points to well over 2.5 million wild pigs in our state. Only one county out of 254 in Texas has been spared from the invasive species.
The pigs are prolific, too. In one year, a female can produce 50 to 100 hogs.
Texas farmers and ranchers see the impact first-hand. Some growers lose at least 30 percent of their crops to wild pigs each year.
Crops such as corn, wheat, oats and rice are hit hard. The wild pigs also prey on young cattle, sheep and goats.
Controlling the growing population is not easy. There is no one silver bullet, and that includes hunting. It will take a multi-faceted approach to manage the pig problem, from both public and private sources.
More control tools are needed, and research is underway to determine which methods are effective and environmentally safe.
Texas farmers and ranchers are hopeful new strategies will get to root of the wild pig problem, and soon.
The preceding commentary is brought to you by Texas Farm Bureau, the “Voice of Texas Agriculture.” Called “Your Texas Agriculture Minute,” TFB will issue thought-provoking editorials each week—via print and audio—to spark understanding of agriculture in the Lone Star State and its impact on each and every Texan.
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