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The Shotem' and Caughtem' Blog is the place to find the latest reviews and commentary on gear, destinations, conditions, events, and general knowledge to inform our readers and give our opinions to anyone listening.

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Hunting the Right Place at the Right Time

Although research confirms that the whitetail rut takes place at virtually the exact same time every year, most hunters know that the rut’s intensity varies from day to day and season to season. As much as your head spins with the mental images of scrapes, full moons, rubs, monster bucks, and rut-crazed chase scenes, the best times to be in the woods will rarely coincide with calendar anniversaries. Through years of personal experience and research gathered from other hunters, I have discovered three critical rut-­influencing elements that can help you tame the annual madness, and also help you predict what I refer to as “high-­intensity rut-hunting days” with great precision. So, let’s leave the long-range rut prognostications behind and get down to brass tacks.

Published in Hunter and Angler Blog

We at Shotem and Caughtem have had many opportunities to witness first hand the destructive capabilities of wild pigs.  We have hunted them in Texas and Oklahoma at different locations and can say that ones first impression of domesticated pigs does not correlate to what you find in the wild.  When we were growing up you thought of pigs as big, pink, fat, slow, dumb animals that wallered around in their own filth.  Once they get out of their domesticated element they do a complete 180 except for the filth part.  They are fit, camo, lean, mean, aggressive and smart animals that waller every where they want.  They tear up fields, dessimate crops and breed like rabbits.  They are capable of surviving any climate range and have been found in varying numbers all over the United States.  

The sport of wild boar hunting has been both a blessing and a curse.  It has been a blessing in the fact that like most hunting it helps to keep populations low.  However, many have found that they can make money from having boar on hunting leases and have transported them to different areas to increase their profits.  What they fail to remember is that the sport is called hunting not shooting and due to the breeding capabilities their populations do not take long to get out of hand.  About a year ago we were made aware that some people decided to start transporting wild pigs onto their property and set them loose to increase the popularity of their hunts.  We warned and pleaded that things would get out of hand quickly and they would become more of a problem than a profit.  Just this last weekend we were made aware that sightings of wild boar have increased from never for the last 20 years to now frequently by our property which is over 20 miles away.  In one year their population has exploded.  What do you expect their only predator left is man.  

Here is a little history to get you up to speed on the habits and signs of wild boar.  Wild pigs (also known as wild hogs, wild boar, or feral swine) are an are not native to the Americas. The first wild pigs in the United States originated solely from domestic stock brought to North America by early European explorers and settlers. Many years later, Eurasian wild boar were introduced into parts of the United States for hunting purposes. In areas where domestic pigs and Eurasian wild boar were found together in the wild, interbreeding occurred. Today, many hybrid populations exist throughout the wild pig’s range.

Pigs were first introduced in the 1500’s to what is now the southeastern U.S. by Spanish Explorer, Hernando DeSoto. In the centuries following European exploration and colonization of the eastern U.S., free-range livestock management practices and escapes from enclosures resulted in the establishment of wild pig populations and promoted their spread.  
Introduction of the Eurasion Wild Boar

In the early 1900’s, Eurasian or Russian wild boar were introduced into portions of the United States.  Additional introductions and escapes of Eurasian wild boar from privately owned, “game-proof” fenced hunting preserves have continued through the present.

  • Wild pigs have been reported in at least 45 states
  • Populations now exist as far north as Michigan, North Dakota, and Oregon
  • Range expansion over the last 20 years is mostly a result of illegal translocation of pigs by humans
Distribution of Wild Pigs in 1988

Distribution of Feral Pigs in the United States in 1988 (Courtesy of Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study, University of Georgia).

 

Distribution of Wild Pigs in 2009

Distribution of Feral Pigs in the United States in 2009 (Courtesy of Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study, University of Georgia).
 
The Human Factor 
 
The popularity of wild pigs as a game species has played a major role in the expansion of their range throughout the United States. The sudden presence of wild pigs in new areas is most often a result ofescapes of stocked animals from privately owned, “game-proof” fenced hunting preserves illegal translocation: the practice of capturing wild pigs, transporting them to new locations, and releasing them into the wild
 
 
Let us know your thoughts on the subject of Wild Boar Hunting and as always post your photos of your outdoor adventures to the galleries and tell us your story.