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Tennessee agency traps hogs with text message system

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Tennessee agency traps hogs with text message system

How many wildlife agents does it take to catch a wild hog? Only one, under a new remote system used by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.

Richard Kirk, an agency program manager, said the new system alerts an on-call agent when there is movement under the trap. Cameras are set up with the trap and the agent can watch feral hogs by video, springing the trap by pushing a button on a computer or smartphone from miles away.

Agents set up a corral that is 35 feet in diameter and bait it with corn. When hogs wander close and set off a motion detector focused on the gate, an agent gets a text message. Then they can watch the video and drop the trap.

Kirk said the new technology can save a lot of staff time. Previously, four agents would study the feeding patterns of a group of feral hogs, set up the trap and then return early on the day they hoped to capture them. Now, they study the feeding patterns, place the trap and wait for a text message.

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