Wildlife agents to shoot wild hogs from the air
Posted: Friday, April 16, 2010 12:07 pm
NASHVILLE (AP) — Federal wildlife officials will shoot wild hogs from helicopters in Tennessee in their third aerial campaign since 2004 to try to control an expanding population.
Officials say a growing number of feral hogs in the state can damage agriculture and the environment and spread diseases.
Brett Dunlap with the Wildlife Services division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture told WPLN radio in Nashville the animals have spread from the mountains of East Tennessee and the Cumberland Plateau to near Nashville in Sumner and Williamson counties.
Hogs are prolific breeders, Dunlap said.
“They can have anywhere from four to eight young (per litter). Sometimes they can reproduce twice a year and they can begin reproducing at less than a year of age,” he said.
Wildlife Services spokeswoman Carol Bannerman in Riverdale, Md., said the first airborne eradication effort in Tennessee in 2004 used USDA personnel who are trained to fire from helicopters in Texas, where the eradication has been under way for some time.
Published in The Messenger 4.16.10