View Full Version : Feral Hog Hunting
January 19, 2008, 12:06 AM
A few friends and I are graduating from highschool this year and feel that a road/hunting trip is in order for this summer. We've got 5 or 6 in the party and we'd most likely be going on June 14th and staying for close to a week. After a bit talking we've decided that a feral hog hunting trip would be the most fun. I don't know much about hog hunting as I'm from Minnesota and have only hunted waterfowl, upland game, and deer my whole life, and because we have a pretty tight budget it would have to be a DIY unguided trip (which I prefer anyways). Lodging wouldn't be a problem because a few of the guys in the group work for a hotel that would give them free rooms and we would camp a few nights as well.
I understand that there is a a year round season for feral hogs and there seems to be no shortage of them down there, but could anyone recommend a certain area/county in Texas to try where our odds of success are at their greatest?
I'm mainly just looking for any general advice such as planning, locations, what to expect, etc.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
January 19, 2008, 12:39 AM
You might try this site for information:
All my hog hunts have been on a friends ranch so I'm not sure what the rest of the state has.
January 19, 2008, 03:27 AM
Bring the largest caliber semi-automatic you can. A bolt can suffice but has a greater chance of a dead hog running off. They bleed little, very little, for the first 20 to 30 seconds. Hard to track.
Go for the head and neck shots, to stop it DRT. (dead right there)
Even in a DRT scenario, the hind legs will still run. They just don't seem to know that the front end is trashed.
Central Texas from just south of Abilene, to the coast around Corpus seems to have the largest general populations.
South of San Antonio was infested last summer and fall. No recent reports heard here on end of deer-season pig population.
What to Expect:
Expect to find them emerging just before sunset until an hour after sunrise.
They are near blind, so keep tall brush behind you and they wont see you.
Stay downwind and they won't smell you.
Get too close and fire on them, and they won't be able to tell where you are. They will scatter, even directly to you.
If they find you close enough, they will swipe tusks at you. Stay on your feet and shove a snake boot in his face as he passes. Snake chaps will suffice.
Be prepared to gag if you cut/burst the intestines. If so, soak the meat in a bucket of bleach water for an hour after harvest. Then, hang to dry.
Boar meat is gamy and specific in odor. Some like it, some don't.
Sow and juveniles meat smells like fresh caught catfish and tastes sweet.
The smaller the pig, the more tender the meat.
Be CERTAIN you are targeting at a pig BEFORE you shoot. The tall brush here will make cows look like pigs at first, even thru a scope.
January 19, 2008, 05:18 AM
If you really want an adventure:
January 19, 2008, 10:00 AM
Write to some high schools in OK and Texas. Tell the folks there what you plan to do. Perhaps you can get invited to hunt free on someone's ranch.
Been hunting hogs for over 20 years, Killed hundreds of them. Some pointers:
1. Although hogs cannot see well, they can detect movement very well.
2. Hogs have really good hearing. They can hear the click of a gun safety at 100 yards and more.
3. Hogs are good eating-especially the smaller ones. The meat must be cooked well.
4. In hot weather hog meat spoils rapidly. I hunt hogs year around and can tell you that one has to have to have a plan to cool the carcass as quickly as possible. At 80 degrees a hog can spoil in three hours or less if not cooled.
5. Hogs are not hard to kill if they are hit well. If the hog is close shoot him in the ear or on a line between the ear and the eye. Look at the link provided. I've seen hogs run off after being hit badly with .300 magnums and 180 grain bullets.
6. Hunt them with a muzzleloader.
January 19, 2008, 10:33 AM
I'd suggest NOT using semi-automatic rifles or shotguns. You'll tend to be more careful about the first shot if you know you don't have a fast second.
Why? Well, as stated above, hogs are VERY good eating and the point of shooting them is not just to kill something but to end up with some truly fine table fare.
Here in Fl., where the woods and swamps tend to be thick, we generally figure to be closer than 50 yards and most times closer than 25. With that in mind we use large slow bullets that punch all the way throgh but do not do as much meat damage as light fast bullets. And yes you must PLACE your shots. If you just shoot the middle of the black animal you will have screwed up.
January 19, 2008, 12:31 PM
I shot 2 here in WNC. one was a little over 100lbs. on hoof. got him w/head shot, DRT. other was around 300 lbs. sow, took a running shot, hit too far back but put a .45 hole thru both lungs. dern thing ran over 1/4 mile. would have lost it but snow was on the ground, mostly. we found blood trail after it went aways. still alive when I found it but near dead. I couped it w/head shot. tough critter. got both w/BP revolvers loaded to max with a slug.
January 19, 2008, 12:59 PM
Firepower shouldn't be a problem as I'd be using a Beretta 3901 12 gauge with a few rifled slugs and/or 00 buckshot accompanied with a CZ 75b as a sidearm. The other guys would be using AK's with 30 round clips or shotguns.
This sounds like a blast, thanks to all who posted. Any more advice would be greatly appreciated as well!
January 19, 2008, 02:58 PM
Leave the AKs home................
Sans that at least be 100% sure there are not local regulations as to magazine capacity. There are such in places and you do not want a ticket.
Personally I don't want to be in the woods with folks carrying 30 round clips. Besides the bad picture it paints for the anti-gun/anti-hunting crowd out there there is always the temptation to use the firepower you have.......
The shotgun is a good choice. Stalk into the wind SLOW and you'll do fine. One well aimed shot is always better.........less meat damage and more sportsmanlike.
January 19, 2008, 04:01 PM
A quick, ethical kill is always top priority in our group. If there are indeed restrictions on magazine capacity the guys do have 5 and 10 round magazines. I am confident that a 7.62 x 39 has enough firepower within 50 yards to kill a hog with a head or spine shot. They have red dots and are good shots.
As far as anti's go, I doubt we'd find any in Texas but I'm sure as hell not going to change the way I hunt just because they view it as wrong. It'd probably be a good thing that they see assault rifles being used for hunting as they seem to think they can only be used to mow down innocent civilians.
We are looking for a spot hopefully in more Northern Texas because we are driving from Northern Minnesota and would like to save as much on gas as possible. We aren't stuck on Texas, so if any of you guys have other recommendations it would be great to hear from ya!
January 19, 2008, 04:11 PM
Hey Beretta16 I live in north central Texas. Used to live in a tiny little town of Moran, they have a lot of hogs up there. hunted from Breckenridge to albany to Cisco lot of hogs in that area. just need to find a place to hunt. seen some monisters killed in that area, some the hard way. one totaled a one ton truck. but the thing had to weigh 800 lbs
January 19, 2008, 04:11 PM
Short of regulations I can't imagine why a 30 round mag would be offensive! If someone don't like it they can go to the house and hide.
If you hit the hog right, blood trail will be easy to find and follow. Aim for right behind the shoulder and right near the bottom of the chest. The heart lays back and low compared to most game animals.
January 19, 2008, 04:48 PM
Thanks shinnery Jim! I guess what I'm mainly looking for now is some towns or counties that hold a lot of hogs and has either state or private land that we could get on. I'd like to have a few options and narrow it down to the town or city that would have the most land or the most pigs that we could hunt.
January 20, 2008, 12:27 AM
Except for migratory birds, Texas does not have a magazine limit for hunting.
January 20, 2008, 03:40 PM
Does anyone know some really concentrated areas in Texas? We are looking for the place with the most hogs and greatest odds of success. Anyone know which areas in Texas have the highest numbers of hogs, or live in an area in TX where they're everywhere?
January 22, 2008, 07:10 PM
Probably going to the Abilene/Moran/Cisco area, or possible farther south closer to San Antonio. Can someone from around there or who has experience hunting in the area give some feedback on the area. Anyone have any suggestions as to an area that may be more fruitful that isn't any further south than San Antonio?
January 23, 2008, 04:58 PM
16, you are unlikely to find any place in Texas to hunt without paying, possible, but unlikely.
If you visit the "Boartuffoutdoors" forum, you may get info about pig hunting in Missouri, they seem to have a lot of pigs and some places to hunt without paying.
January 23, 2008, 05:19 PM
Try Florida around Lake Kissime. Been down there a few times and had great hunts. Contact the lightsee cattle company about their hunts on Brahma island. Killed a 290 pound boar there last January.
I saw a few comments about using a 7.62x39 to hunt hogs. It may have the power, but remember that it is an intermediate cartridge. I never hunt hogs with less than a .44 magnum. There have been many times I have been charged even after great shot placement. They will get down right mean when shot!
I like lever actions when hunting hogs. It just makes it more fun.
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