Feral swine adapt to just about any habitat, have few natural enemies, and reproduce at high rates. As such, their population is growing rapidly nationwide. At 5 million animals and counting, feral swine are now found in at least 39 States and cause approximately $1.5 billion in damages and control costs each year. Their damage is diverse and includes destroying native habitats and crops, eating endangered species, and spreading disease. Natural resource managers, researchers and academics nationwide are grappling with how best to address the challenges of feral swine management.
Feral swine are hunted by the public in some States for recreational purposes; but hunting will not solve our country’s feral swine problems.
“Feral swine don’t know boundaries and what happens in one State affects neighboring States,” states APHIS’ new national feral swine initiative coordinator Dr. Dale Nolte. “Only through a concerted, comprehensive effort with the public and our State and Federal partners can we begin to turn the tide on feral swine expansion and reduce their negative impacts to our economy and environment.”