A southwestern state is facing a feral hog apocalypse that threatens agriculture, and now the state’s agriculture commissioner thinks has an answer: poison.
Texas is being overrun by 2.5 million wild or feral hogs that cause at least $50 million a year in damage to agriculture, The Austin American Statesman reported. The hogs also destroy lawns, flower beds, vegetable gardens, livestock tanks and even Internet, television and phone cables.
Not even the killing of 750,000 wild pigs by hunters each year has been able to control the hog invasion. The hogs were brought to Texas centuries ago by Spanish pioneers who turned them loose to ensure a food supply.
The solution to the hog problem is a poison called Kaput Feral Hog Lure, Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller told the newspaper. The poison has a substance called warfarin, which acts as a blood thinner in humans. But it kills pigs.
“This is going to be the hog apocalypse, if you like,” Miller told The American-Statesman. “If you want them gone, this will get them gone.”
The plan is to allow people to attract hogs with nontoxic food, and once the hogs keep coming back, replace the food with the poison.
One group not sold on Miller’s idea is the state’s hog hunters. They fear it will threaten their families and damage the environment.
“If this hog is poisoned, do I want to feed it to my family?” Eydin Hansen, the vice president of the Texas Hog Hunters Association, asked.
“If a hog dies, what eats it? Coyotes, buzzards…” Hansen told AP. “We’re gonna affect possibly the whole ecosystem.”
Some Texans use hog hunting to put food on the table.
“It’s a way to feed your family,” Hansen said.
Hogs who have eaten the poison have fat that is blue, Miller said.
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