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Why are feral hogs so populous in Louisiana?



MONROE, La. — Feral hogs roam wild in all 64 parishes of Louisiana and are around 700,000 in population.

Feral hogs are the most reproductive mammal in North America, due to sow’s – a baby hog – reaching sexual maturity at 6-8 months of age.

“They can reproduce several times a year and the female can have a litter of baby piglets anywhere from 4 to 6, sometimes 12 piglets at a time,” said Lisa Taylor, the General Curator at the Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo in Monroe.

Officials say that feral hogs have a maximum life span of 10-14 years in the wild, but few hogs actually survive past 4 years. This is more than enough time for them to wreak havoc on the agricultural industry of the state.

In order to keep the hogs population in check, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) says that an estimated 75% of the hog population must be removed. As of right now, the LDWF says that the current rate of removal is less than half of the estimated need and so the feral hog populations are growing.

“Feral hogs are an invasive species and they are a nuisance animal here in Louisiana, and probably all the southern states,” said Lisa Taylor, the general curator at the Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo in Monroe. “They’re in no danger of becoming endangered.

Taylor also warns that if you see a pack of pigs, you need to remember that female hogs are close and very protective of their young. Your best option to stay safe is to just stay away.