Sun, May 15, 2011
Texas Legislature Approves Hog Hunting From Aircraft
The Texas legislature has approved a bill that allows hunters to
shoot feral pigs from helicopters, a measure the bill's sponsors
say is necessary to cull the growing population of the animals.
When it was introduced last year, some Texas lawmakers thought
it was a joke, and handed out "Pork Chopper" buttons at the
capital. But with the population growing, and wild hogs starting to
damage suburban lawns and even cemeteries, this year the bill made
it to the Governor's desk. It is as yet unsigned.
Texas already allows landowners to hunt hogs from helicopters on
their own property, but this legislation would open the practice to
any licensed hunter in the state, according to a report in the
New York Times. Legislators said the wild hogs cause up to
$400 million in damage to agriculture every year. Even wildlife
biologists at the Texas Parks and Wildlife department say the
hunting is beneficial in controlling overpopulation.
Not to mention the meat is said to be pretty tasty.
Ranchers say the wild hogs are very destructive to property, and
are "vicious." One told the New York Times that he has
killed over 500 of the animals, which can weigh up to 600 pounds,
on his property over the past three years ... 90 this year
If the legislation is signed, local helicopter pilots expect a
bump in business. They charge between $300 and $600 per hour for
the hunting expeditions. However, safety is a big concern. One said
the biggest issue is how people handle guns when they are aboard
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