Trapping wild and feral hog populations is a common control method used by both hunters and landowners. Live hog trapping enables the individual to harvest the animal, feed it out, or sell it for a profit. Live trapping also allows numerous hogs and pigs to be caught at once without hunters having to spend valuable time in the field waiting, looking, or chasing hogs. Several types and designs of live traps can be used, and all have their pros and cons. The most common hog trap design is a 4 foot by 8 foot heavy duty cage with a spring door, root door, or drop door.
Trapping is a popular technique for controlling feral hog populations and obtaining good, edible meat. The most commonly used hog trapping set consists of a box trap with a spring door or root door. These are considered “live” traps because no harm is done to the animal once trapped inside. These live traps are typically lightweight for easy transportation and placement, yet strong enough to prevent even the stoutest feral hog from escaping.
The advantage of spring door, or side-hinged, and root door (hinged on top) traps enables more than one hog to be trapped at a time. It is not uncommon for as many as six or more hogs to be caught at the same time in a single hog trap. In fact, the first hog caught may act as a lure to trap additional hogs. The design of the door prevents the captured hogs from exiting the way they entered, but allows hogs outside the trap to push their way in.
Snares can also be used effectively on hogs when placed under fences in travel ways that surround active feeding, beeding, or wallowing areas. However nontarget wildlife species may also be captured in traps set for feral hogs. In some areas, aerial shooting from a helicopter is an effective method in areas with more open habitat. Currently there are not any types birth control, toxicants, or repellents registered for the control of wild or feral hogs.
Feral hog populations have managed to survive and thrive despite human attempts at population control. While it is possible to control hog populations with continuous control through hog trapping, shooting, and harassment, it is next to impossible to eradicate a hog population within an established range.