Larue Tactical OBR 7.62

Texas has a problem; her problem is wild hogs. The feral hog population is now close to two million and the LaRue Tactical PredatAR OBR 7.62 can help. Texas has a problem. With gas at $4 per gallon, it’s not oil. The three-year drought has broken and cotton levels are at an all-time high. Her problem is wild hogs. Feral hog populations have reached a critical mass, exploding across the landscape. Near impossible to starve, scare or poison, invasive hogs now number close to two million in Texas.

According to Texas A&M University feral hogs are the most prolific large, wild mammal in North America. Given adequate nutrition feral hog populations can double in four months. They have become an absolute danger to both the environment and agriculture, rooting and destroying crops and fragile habitats with damages exceeding $400 million in the state of Texas alone. After a rooting herd of hogs passes by, the place can resemble a World War I “no-man’s land” scene, fully denuded and bereft of life.

State biologists estimate one feral sow living a normal life can account for over four hundred offspring. Moreover, it is estimated that culling 70 percent of the the current population will only stem the tide to a manageable level &mdash much more work lies ahead. Now there are practically no restrictions to hog hunting in Texas. The state requires an :exotic” hunting license, which is cheap, carries no tag limits, and permits hunters to use bows, rifles or shotguns with no magazine restrictions. Yet with all this latitude the problem persists. In many ways, hunters are properly and unfortunately the last resort, and this has lead to the practice of aerial hog eradication. But unlike traditional big-game hunting, the purpose of aerial hog shooting is to remove a destructive, invasive species from the land.

Enter the helicopter eradication specialist turned guide/outfitter. Since September of 2011, Texas has allowed licensed eradication pilots to sell shooter seats on their previously restricted business of nuisance animal control. Now landowners and hunters can fly with contracted pilots to fire down upon hogs.

Aerial Hogging
So what is aerial hog shooting? Is it sporting? Does it work? Kyle Lange, a second-generation helicopter pilot and Texan from San Angelo, believes the regulation change has not only opened up the process to a broader range of shooters but has also raised awareness of the feral hog problem. “It’s slightly more complicated than people think. You need good terrain, dedicated shooters and solid flying. If you want to solve the problem, you can’t just shoot a few hogs just to say you have done it, and go home. Seeing the hogs from the air gives new insight into the magnitude of the problem. There were times where we have hunted the same area year after year and only after the third year of aggressive eradication did we see a drop off in the number of hogs.”