For the first time, Louisiana hunters have taken more wild hogs than deer. Hunters killed 183,600 hogs in Louisiana in 2013, an increase of 14 percent over 2012. The deer harvest for the 2013-14 season was 166,200, according to WWL.com.
Louisiana has liberalized its hog hunting regulations, classifying hogs as “outlaw quadrupeds” and allowing them to be taken all year, and at night at certain times on private land. Nevertheless, hog numbers continue to grow, and as they do, deer populations decline.
“Deer and hogs do not socially tolerate,” says Scott Durham of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. “[Deer] don’t tolerate hogs very well. [Hogs] kind of run them off. Where hogs exist, deer indexes [and] deer sightings are reduced as much as 49 percent.”
Hogs also damage crops and compete with turkeys and even quail for food, says Durham.