Irving Sharing Wild Hog Success Story

By Julie Tam
|  Thursday, Mar 17, 2011  |  Updated 6:45 PM CDT
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<a title=Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples says Irving has gotten a handle on its feral hog problems through trapping, but other cities need to do the same." />

Julie Tam, NBCDFW.com

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples says Irving has gotten a handle on its feral hog problems through trapping, but other cities need to do the same.

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Waging War on Wild Hogs

The City of Irving discovered it had a much larger feral hog problem than anyone knew after trapping nearly 170 wild pigs in the past few months.

Wild Pigs Run Rampant in Texas

A special hunting season will open soon to help combat feral hogs at Lavon Lake Park.
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The state agriculture commissioner says other cities should follow Irving's lead in dealing with wild hogs.

Since October, Irving has caged nearly 250 feral hogs, about half of the city's wild hog population.

But Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples said other cities need to do the same. Wildlife officials say the hogs are now plaguing urban areas because of changing habitats and prolific reproduction.

"When Irving does a good job and eliminates their population, the other hogs from other areas will then spill in because it's open space, and there's not the competition for food, so unless everyone is making a proactive effort, we're not going to get on top of the problem," Staples said.

Texas has up to 2 million of the hairy beasts -- about half of the nation's population. Many have tusks and they shred fields and pastures, wrecking ecosystems by wallowing in riverbeds and streams.

Irving began trapping its feral hogs last year after hogs roaming near the Trinity River moved into residential neighborhoods.

The animals destroy landscaping and can be aggressive, even attacking small pets.

The largest hog trapped by the city weighed in at 375 pounds. The captured pigs are taken to Frontier Meats in Fort Worth to be turned into food.

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