In much of the country, wild hog hunting is going . . . well, hog wild. But the animal’s growing population in some states is causing alarm among wildlife officials, who say feral pigs spread disease, ruin habitat for native wildlife, and even kill fawn deer. Two concerned states are Iowa and Pennsylvania.
From the Associated Press:
_”They destroy the natural habitat that’s out there,” said Angi Bruce, who heads the Iowa Department of Natural Resource’s southwest wildlife bureau. “It basically looks like a plow has gone through the area. . . .
“There are a lot of people who have been down to the southern states and have enjoyed hunting them there, and would like to see that in Iowa,” Bruce said. “That’s a huge problem.”_
And from Pennsylvania’s The Morning Call:
_”I think we’re getting close to the point where this thing is going to be an unstoppable train,” said David R. Griswold, assistant director of the state Agriculture Department’s bureau of animal health and diagnostic services. . . .
“Having a large population of feral swine in an area is not without trade-offs, because they compete with deer, turkeys and grouse,” [he] said. “You better like hunting hogs, because you are going to be hunting fewer of Pennsylvania’s other game species in that same area.”_
What do you think? Is this a good trade-off or a bad one? Are pigs a prize or a pestilence?