Hog heaven is a state of complete happiness that comes to American hunters when they succeed in taking out one of 5 million invasive feral hogs.
Invasive critters ranging from wild boars to constrictor snakes are taking over America. The Obama administration has responded with executive orders banning the interstate transport or international import of invasive species of constrictor snakes like Burmese pythons, which are eliminating species of deer, bobcats, raccoons, rabbits, foxes and opossums native to the Florida Everglades.
Nice try. Neither scientists nor U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials have proffered a solution—save a surprise mini Ice Age in South Florida—for stopping invasive snakes from slithering up to New York within mere decades. Moreover new laws have done little to relieve Texas farmers holding land pocked with hog holes.
We need a better solution. Step aside, bureaucrats. Here come the hunters.
I recently interviewed one of America’s most experienced hog hunters, Brian McCombie. If you’re a hunter with an interest in taking on our invasive hog population, then get ready to take notes…
What is your hunting background and how did you get into what you do today?
I started hunting when I was 13 and living in Michigan. Small game: squirrels and rabbits. I went to college to become various other things (engineer, geologist, etc.) but ended up majoring in English and then going to grad school for creative writing. As I started writing for the magazines in the 1980s, a friend of mine in the outdoor writing industry asked me to submit some pieces to a magazine he was editing. That’s where my outdoor writing career started, though at the time, I just thought of the outdoor magazines as another place to publish some work. Never thought it would become my career!
For boar hunting, what do you have to do to obtain an out-of-state license?
Depends on the state. To hunt hogs on public lands, most states will require you to have a general non-resident hunting license or a hunting license for the particular game season (deer hunting, turkey, etc.).
Generally, most states don’t have a hog hunting “season,” or bag limits, as hogs are not legally defined as game animals (unlike, deer or elk). They are considered non-native or invasive species. But every state is a little different—check your game agency regulations first!