Arkansas considers new solution to deal with feral hog problem

by George Jared (gjared@talkbusiness.net) 488 views 

Feral hogs are a growing problem in Arkansas and across the United States and state officials are considering the approval of a poison to reign-in feral hog populations. Feral hogs have an estimated total population between four and five million across 39 states. It is estimated feral hogs cause $1.5 billion annually in agricultural and ecological damage.

The Arkansas Feral Hog Eradication Task Force is seeking input from Arkansans regarding the registration and potential restrictions on authorized uses of Kaput Feral Hog Bait as a viable eradication method. Feedback is being solicited through Oct. 22. The Feral Hog Eradication Task Force was created during the Arkansas Legislature during the 2017 general session and was directed to create a plan for the eradication of feral hogs in Arkansas.

Those interested may submit responses at an online survey at this link, or by sending comments to Arkansas Agriculture Secretary Wes Ward at wes.ward@aad.arkansas.gov. Comments received will be presented to the Feral Hog Eradication Task Force at their next scheduled meeting Oct. 25. The Feral Hog Eradication Task Force strongly suggests that Arkansans submit comments or complete the survey only after reviewing the product manufacturers label for Kaput Feral Hog Bait. The product manufacturer’s label as well as additional information regarding feral hogs and the Feral Hog Eradication Task Force is available here.

Feral hogs are not native to the United States. They are an invasive species, a public nuisance and a threat to Arkansas, according to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. They compete for food resources, destroy habitat by rooting and wallowing and will eat ground-nesting birds, eggs, fawns and young domestic livestock. They also carry up to 45 bacteria, diseases and parasites, including Trichinellosis, Brucellosis and swine herpes virus.

Hunting and shooting feral hogs has been implemented for the last few decades. It can chase feral hogs away from crops or food plots temporarily, but they return or become a problem for a neighboring landowner. Studies show at least 66% of a hog population must be removed each year just to prevent it from growing. Hunting has shown to reduce hog populations by up to 50%.

The bait formulation in this product is warfarin-based and has demonstrated efficacy against feral hogs at a formulation strength one-fifth the concentration of warfarin that has been registered for controlling rodents in the U.S. for more than 60 years. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registered Scimetrics’ Kaput Feral Hog Bait on January 3, 2017. Kaput Feral Hog Bait is the only toxicant approved by the EPA for the control of feral hogs. This product is not registered for use in any other state.

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