Mon December 5, 2011
Wild hogs on the loose
By A Treasure Coast Essay
Fort Pierce, FL – Wild hog are becoming a nuisance on the Treasure Coast, especially in St. Lucie County. They come out at night in search of food- alone or in gangs -- and root up the ground with their broad snouts. What they leave behind looks like a plowed field. Entire yards and gardens have been ruined. Wild hogs will eat anything - plants, small animals, maybe a stray pet. They can weigh over 150 pounds and measure more than five feet in length. Large teeth grow out of the sides of their mouth. Wild hogs are found in all of Florida's 67 counties. They are descended from domestic pigs brought by the Spanish in the 1500s. In St. Lucie County, wild hogs have been roaming around the Savannas Recreation Area, the Oxbow Eco-Center, Bluefield Ranch, Fairwinds Golf Course and even the airport. County officials have been working on a plan to issue permits that would allow the trapping or hunting of wild hogs on county property. The city of Port St. Lucie set up a permit system whereby landowners could hunt wild hogs, but only a few permits have been issued. Wild hog can be aggressive. They even have been known to attack motor vehicles. Attention, campers! Watch out for wild hogs if you go walking around the camp site after it gets dark. For 88.9 FM, this is Paul Janensch.
Treasure Coast essayist Paul Janensch was a newspaper editor and taught journalism at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut.