We hunt hogs all year long. We could hunt hogs every day of the year, and I don’t believe we’d put a dent in our hog population. The reproductive nature of the hogs is far greater than we can control. We’ve got all sizes and all ages of hogs. Some of them have big cutters, and some of their cutters are small. Some people hunt for meat and others for trophies. Some of our hunters want to hunt the hogs with dogs. Kent Outdoors uses a guide out of Windthorst, Tex., who has Catahoula bay dogs and pit bulls for catching wild hogs. All the bay dogs have tracking collars, and we take them to places where we’ve seen fresh hog signs and turn them loose.
You can tell the difference in the bay dogs’ barks from when they’re running a wild pig, or if they’ve got the big hog bayed-up. When feral pigs are tired of running and ready to fight the dogs, they’ll stand and get ready for combat. That’s when you send in the catch dogs. We usually run two catch dogs and the two pit bulls go in and grab the pig - one dog on each ear. Then the guide goes in behind the pig, grabs its two back legs and lifts the hind legs off the ground. The the hunter comes in and grabs one of the pig’s front legs, throws it over and stabs it with a knife. We usually use a 12” Bowie knife. The biggest hog we’ve ever caught weighed about 350 pounds.
The other way we hunt hogs is we take our hunters out and put them in a stand with a game camera on it. That way we know what time the hogs are coming by the game cameras and will be in range of the hunters. Because hogs usually travel in sounders (a family group of hogs often 8-20 or more), often we know what size hogs and how many you’re likely to see in an area. On most of our hunts, we have a two-pig limit per person. We have had a group of about four or five guys who have taken 12 pigs before on one hunt.
The best time to hunt hogs here in Texas is when the farmers start planting their winter wheat, generally about September 25th each year. Somehow the hogs know there are thousands and thousands of pounds of winter wheat waiting for them to come and find at that time. During that first two months after the winter wheat’s planted, we’ll usually have a tremendous number of hogs taken. Then the number of hogs we’re seeing will drop-off some, the hogs will come back and start feeding on the wheat in daytime hours again, once the weather’s cold. Most of the hunters who want to take hogs for meat prefer to take a pig that weighs 40-150 pounds. After a feral hog weighs more than 150 pounds, most people don’t want to eat them. Usually during the late spring and early summer, we’re getting our green fields planted, and our crow fields planted. So, there’s some kind of critter that’s always in season and needs to be hunted here in north Texas and southern Oklahoma.
Day 4: Kent Outdoors Homes Plenty of Deer and Turkeys on Their Properties