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Old February 2, 2013, 09:42 AM   #1
Double Naught Spy
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Scavenger Cam - Response to What Ate My Pig Last Night

603Country posted a thread about his pig that disappeared.
http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=513656

That thread inspired this thread. So on Thursday night, I shot a small boar that had been visiting for the last couple of weeks. With no available home for it, I decided to feed it to nature and track what happens to it.

I drove a t-post into the ground and wired the hog to the t-post with wire going around his body and each leg. The wire is to help hold the carcass in place longer while the game camera takes pictures of scavengers going after the carcass. This would not directly mimic 603 Country's circumstances and I don't have a big sounder of hogs visiting currently either, but I thought it my be insightful as to what happens to the carcass after nobody is around.

Using a Covert Spec Ops Code Black camera that sends pictures to me, I will be uploading them to Photobucket and the pictures can be viewed here with the latest images first (so reverse order)...
http://s1274.photobucket.com/albums/y440/HornHillCam1/

On Friday, vultures took notice of the carcass, but apparently did not start in on it. I suspect that today (Saturday) they will realize that the hog is fully dead.

I was a bit surprised to find deer at the feeder and browsing in my food plot with the dead hog laying there. So far, the raccoons have just being going by the hog, seemingly unbothered. This morning, one of the turkeys came by.

The hog was shot Thursday night with .308 Nosler Accubond, through the left shoulder and exiting the right side, low on the body from a distance of about 60 yards and ran about 40 yards. Based on his teeth, he was less than a year old. He weighed approximately 120 lbs.

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Last edited by Double Naught Spy; February 2, 2013 at 09:52 AM.
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Old February 3, 2013, 07:02 AM   #2
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Great post Double Naught. I too found it interesting that the deer took no notice of the hog.

I'll be curious to see what other critters get after it.
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Old February 3, 2013, 05:21 PM   #3
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Crow hunters came through yesterday, apparently scared off the buzzards and left crow snacks behind, but they turkeys are back, meandering about, ignoring the pig.

This pig is lasting longer than expected, mostly unmolested.
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Old February 4, 2013, 10:18 PM   #4
jakemonroe
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that your dog looking at it?
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Old February 4, 2013, 10:29 PM   #5
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LOL, no, that would be a trespassing dog. My dog and I are some 50+ miles away.

I am not even sure why the hog is still there, why the coyotes are avoidiing it, where the vultures have gone.

It is interesting to see the patterning of the corn uneaten, the corn scattered near the hog being left alone.
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Old February 4, 2013, 11:16 PM   #6
tmlynch
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Do you think that having tied it to the post has had an effect on scavenger activity? How long do untethered carcasses usually last?

It seems typical to hear that dead hogs disappear within 24 hours. If that is true, then something has to account for the difference.

Very interesting experiment.

Tom

PS Two edits made. Boy does my typing suck.

Last edited by tmlynch; February 5, 2013 at 12:02 AM.
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Old February 4, 2013, 11:46 PM   #7
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Have watched deer actually walk up and sniff/eat around gut piles before so it's not surprising at their reaction to the dead hog.

The fact that the yotes haven't come to call is surprising.
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Old February 5, 2013, 09:53 AM   #8
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Hogs I have dragged into the woods are usually torn open by the 2nd or 3rd night and gone within 5 or 6, except for one that got frozen under a layer of sleet that lasted longer. By "dragged into the woods," I mean that we drag them just into the tree line to get them out of the basic scenery.
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Old February 5, 2013, 06:38 PM   #9
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Man, the trigger on that trailcam is sensitive! It got triggered by bunnies!
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Old February 13, 2013, 05:03 PM   #10
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Well, I had a few hours of buzzards working on the carcass today, the last couple of images showing half the picture covered by wings and I think that a buzzard may have roosted on the camera and knocked it down or akilter.

This was the last image sent today.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg PIC Scavenger Cam Feathers.JPG (76.8 KB, 74 views)
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"If you look through your scope and see your shoe, aim higher."
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Old February 13, 2013, 10:23 PM   #11
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That pig is lasting longer than I expected. How about the next one gets staked where you usually drag them? Then you can see if cover vs. open seems to make a difference to scavengers.

I think you need a second game cam.

Tom
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Old February 14, 2013, 12:50 AM   #12
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I just spent a week in North Carolina, and was wondering (when I saw new posts in the thread) if I had missed something interesting while I was gone.

It's quite surprising to see that that hog has lasted so long.
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Old February 14, 2013, 07:54 AM   #13
Double Naught Spy
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The hog has lasted and no other hogs have shown and the deer have totally stopped coming despite showing up on other cams on the property. The strange thing is that the hog, as of a few days ago, didn't smell too bad. I showed up after a rain and for the most part, it didn't smell that different than a wet dog, which surprised me. I expected the rancid, putrifaction smell.

Last night, coons spent some time at the hog. I don't know if they were checking it out or sampling, but they didn't just ignore it as they have been for the most part.
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Old February 14, 2013, 09:24 AM   #14
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Must be that a Limestone County pig is just tastier than a Montague County pig. As for hunting the pigs, I've been a bit lazy lately and haven't hunted that hard. But I did see and shoot a real whopper of a hog. Haven't found him yet. From just the look of him from about 250 yds, he was the biggest hog I've ever seen on this place. I'd have weighed that big fellow.
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Old February 14, 2013, 01:56 PM   #15
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One possible reason it hasn't been hit hard by the buzzards is that it is on its tummy... Had it been on its side, they could easier get in the gut... Also I think they see the bloated shape better if the carrion is on its side so the legs rise up when bloated...

Also I was wondering what role your weather played in this thing lasting so long... And your noting lack of rancid death odor lends to that a bit...

Brent
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Old February 14, 2013, 02:23 PM   #16
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As with any food source in nature, it is still there because either it is not desirable at all, there is a plenitude of other food in the immediate area, it has not been found yet or there is something keeping hungry animals away. Hard to believe that a hog carcass would not be desirable to scavengers such as buzzards, crows and coyotes. Also hard to believe that even without a overwhelming stench, it has not yet been found. The Vultures are there, but seem quite disinterested even tho there is a comparable banquet there for them.

I kinda figured the trespassing dog would have have least been back to roll in it.....
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Old February 15, 2013, 07:58 AM   #17
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Coyotes and other carrion eaters are funny critters. Sometimes the possums are first to a carcass. They usually go in the rear of a hog. Then the coyotes show up to finish the job.

Some carcasses lay there mostly undisturbed by critters. i've seen this several times on the wheatfields in Tillman county, OK.

Most of the buzzards left SW OK last fall. They will be back in the spring.
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Old February 15, 2013, 09:40 AM   #18
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I will get up there this weekend and rotate it on its side and see if that matters. Thanks Brent for the suggestion. It may be a weird task to accomplish. It may not get accomplished depending on what may happen to ooze out. I may just pop it again with a pistol round to release any possible pressure and then slice the side with a knife to open it.

Even so, I can't figure out where the coyotes are. I actually have pictures of them elsewhere on the property since this guy has been hanging out.
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Old February 15, 2013, 09:59 AM   #19
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I can see quite a series of experiments to identify factors in speed of scavenger disposal of a pig carcass.
  • Staked vs. unstaked carcass
  • Prone vs. supine orientation
  • Open location vs. covered location

Brian, you better start whacking more pigs.

Tom
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Old February 15, 2013, 05:29 PM   #20
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Thanks Tom.

I shot this one last evening with 10 minutes left on Valentine's Day, but have no place for it and so it went on the "bone pile" of the property where it was shot. He was actually feeding amongst a group of deer I startled in a big field when I was on the way back to my car. In the confusion, he apparently circled around and was coming down the path I was on, toward me, and so got popped in the face at 42 yards and he was dirt was DRT. While closing the distance certainly made the shot easier, I have come to the belief that I don't like pigs coming at me in the dark when I am on the ground with them.
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Old February 17, 2013, 06:19 PM   #21
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Quote:
While closing the distance certainly made the shot easier, I have come to the belief that I don't like pigs coming at me in the dark when I am on the ground with them.
Now try that unarmed and it is a pig that is being run by dogs...

Have managed to boot a couple as they go by... CLOSE!!!

Brent
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Old February 17, 2013, 06:30 PM   #22
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Quote:
Now try that unarmed and it is a pig that is being run by dogs...

Have managed to boot a couple as they go by... CLOSE!!!

Brent
Rekon U could do that again..but get it on video next time?
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Old February 17, 2013, 07:02 PM   #23
Double Naught Spy
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Quote:
Now try that unarmed and it is a pig that is being run by dogs...

Have managed to boot a couple as they go by... CLOSE!!!

Brent
If I have guns, why would I want to try that unarmed? That would be silly.
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Old February 17, 2013, 10:49 PM   #24
hogdogs
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LOL... We just don't have guns when runnin' dogs... plenty of gear to keep up with already is just one reason...

Brent
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Old February 18, 2013, 09:23 PM   #25
Double Naught Spy
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Well, this scavenger cam appears to be a bust. It has been nearly three weeks and the hog is still there.

So I broke out one of my old hard drives that had images from 2009. I uploaded a set of images showing a previous scavenger cam of a 250+ boar that disappeared in 3 days. There are some 1277 images starting with a bloated boar impaled on a piece of rebar that finishes up with there being nothing but a big grease spot. Long about page 58, the coyotes are able to drag the remains off the carcass off the rebar and the last that is seen is where it has been dragged down the road. The images show lots of buzzard, coyote, and even bug action (looks like black dots on the pig during night images).

Sorry there is so many images, but you can skip around and look at whatever you like.
http://s627.photobucket.com/albums/t...engers%202009/

This was the first hog I ever shot, BTW.
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