Why These Wild Animals In North Dakota Are Not Wanted
Feral Hogs in North Dakota? You bet! They have been documented as being in North Dakota since 2007. The first sightings were near Grassy Butte and in the Turtle Mountains.
A Wide-Ranging Threat
Wild boar, razorback, feral hog, wild pig. Those are just a few of the names for one of the most destructive, formidable invasive species in the United States. Feral swine adapt to just about any habitat, have few natural enemies, and reproduce at high rates. Estimates vary, but their population likely exceeds 6 million nationwide. They cause tremendous damage up to $2.5 billion annually to crops, forestry, livestock, and pastures. Feral swine also present great risks to human health and safety. They can harbor and transmit dozens of parasites and diseases.
Hogs Affect Nature
If there are feral hogs in the woods you hunt, there may not be as many wild turkeys as there could be. Hogs have previously been named among many suspects for causing the recent national decline in turkeys, but not until this August did Auburn University reveal brand new science documenting a relationship: Where they exist in the U.S., feral hogs may be suppressing wild turkeys, and if you remove hogs, turkeys could rebound.
Big Pig Study
A study at Texas A&M in joint with Auburn University found 29% of simulated turkey nests were raided by hogs, the most of any nest predator. According to Auburn University, “When the number of feral hogs removed is equal to the initial population, there will be a 70% increase in wild turkey abundance. When you remove twice the initial hog population, there will be a 190% increase in wild turkey abundance.”
To Hear More Gobbles, Stop The Squeal
Swine have a reproduction rate six times that of whitetail deer – SIX TIMES. The universities have discovered for the management of feral hogs or pigs, it requires a removal rate of at least 50 to 70% of a hog population annually, with most of those being sows and young, to bring it under control.
What To Do
Landowners or hunters who encounter feral pigs in North Dakota must notify the State Board of Animal Health immediately. The shooting of feral pigs is illegal in North Dakota unless a person is protecting property or livestock.
Observe or suspect the presence of feral pigs, make the call. North Dakota Board of Animal Health at 701-328-2655, Game and Fish Department at 701-328-6300, or United States Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services at 701-250-4405.