Each year, feral hogs cause extensive damage to property, ecosystems, agriculture and more. That damage, along with controls costs amount to $1.5 billion each year. Feral hogs are an invasive species that are difficult, if not almost impossible to control in any meaningful capacity. However, with the bad comes a silver lining which is that they provide a great hunting opportunity for hunters. Nick says growing up in Minnesota, he wasn't all that familiar with hog hunting. However, after moving to Nashville and taking up residence in the south he has come to really enjoy hunting feral hogs. Not only do you get to take hogs off the landscape in the name of management, but the meat is also great, Nick says. Working through hunting cancellations this year due to COVID, Nick says he jumped at the opportunity to go hunt hogs in Georgia this past July. Georgia has a huge population of feral hogs that have invaded all 159 counties - a population so big that it's only outsized by the number of hogs in Texas and Florida. Because there are so many feral hogs, one would think it would be relatively easy to bag the bacon, however Nick says hunting in July presented some real challenges. Intense heat and humidity were big challenges, as were all the crops still in the fields. This is a hard time of year to hunt, he says, because it's so hot that the pigs don't move until night, and even when they move they often have no reason to leave the protection, comfort and resources of the fields. You know they are all around you, Nick says, but you just can't see them. Nick says he would definitely hunt Georgia hogs again, he would just do it at a different point in the year. When it comes to pigs, Nick also talks about how he squares his enjoyment of hog hunting with the fact that he actually has a pet pig at home. Just like everything else, hunting is full of irony and contradictions, Nick says.
Finally, Nick previews his fall plans as he prepares to take off in the beginning of September just as many fall big game hunting seasons get underway. He also reveals that right now he was supposed to have been hunting in Kyrgyzstan, a dream hunt for Marco Polo sheep. However, this hunt of a lifetime was blown out of the water by the COVID fallout.
Be sure to watch the fifth season of "Nick's Wild Ride" which premieres Monday, September 7th, at 10:30 p.m. ET on Outdoor Channel. Plus, you can access and watch every episode from seasons 1 - 4 anytime you want, with MyOutdoorTV.