A protective dad shot a huge hog in his front yard after he heard his daughter screaming from the front room around 10 p.m. on July 11.
Wade Seago and his family live in Samson, a rural town in south Alabama, on his 100-acre property. While wild animals are common in the area, and their dog often barks at the wildlife, Seago realized something was wrong when he heard his teenage daughter scream, reported AL.com. He ran to the front room and that’s when he saw his dog barking at a giant hog in the front yard.
The retired corrections officer, concerned that the hog would injure or kill his dog, Cruiser, grabbed his .38 caliber revolver he kept in the house for defense and shot the hog.
Man shoots mammoth 820 pound wild hog in his front yard https://t.co/9lxxya3AEU
— Joe Songer (@JoeSonger22) July 18, 2017
In recent years, the state has been struggling to cope with the environmental impact of these disease-carrying crop destroyers. It has been described as an “epidemic of pigs” by locals, according to a local CBS affiliate WIAT story in March.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR) website says that all counties in the state are now impacted by populations of feral hogs. They are such a problem that wildlife damage permits are available to property owners for damage resulting from feral hogs.
If left unchecked, the non-native hogs can destroy the ecological balance of the environment, greatly impacting native species. “You may have 30 pigs going through your hardwood bottom like a Hoover vacuum cleaner, sucking up all the acorns that deer, turkey, and squirrels depend on. That doesn’t get mentioned enough. And you’ve got these threatened and endangered plant communities, like the pitcher plant bogs that have been destroyed by hogs. Some of those habitats will never come back,” said Chris Jaworowski, a biologist from the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF) Division.
Hogs are prolific reproducers and destructive feeders. They are known to carry or transmit over 30 diseases and 37 parasites, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The destructive behavior of the feral hogs impact locals farmers the most, with a 2009 study finding $74 million in damage from feral hogs, according to the ADCNR.
The morning after the ordeal, Seago took the hog to a local peanut company to weigh. The hog weighed in at 820 pounds. After posting photos on Facebook, Seago said he received positive and also negative comments, mainly from people who don’t understand the local situation with the feral animals.
The USDA estimates there’s $800 million in agricultural damage due to feral hogs in the United States annually. A 2014 Scientific American report said the USDA spends another $20 million per year to counter the spread of the hogs.
Alabama regulations have empowered landowners and lease holders to act when they encounter the feral pests.