CRINER — Two rifle shots rang out in the distance, and I knew what it meant. My two hunting companions on this cold December day probably had just downed a couple of feral hogs.
It was getting late in the afternoon and I began to fear I would be the only member of this hunting party not taking home pork at the end of the day.
I had been sitting in the hunting blind for nearly two hours and had seen a half-dozen hogs roaming through the woods, but none had offered me a clean shot.
Two hogs had cautiously braved their way toward a ravine below where corn had been scattered nearby, even sticking their snouts out from under the brush and sniffing around, but evidently I didn't pass their smell test. They turned around and headed back up the hill, protected under the thick cover.
As daylight began to slip away, I started to wonder if I had missed my opportunity. But then another hog came along that was not as wary as the previous pigs.
The big boar stepped into the clearing and walked straight toward me. The hog then turned its head, offering a shot through the shoulder and into the vital organs. The .308 Winchester round dropped the swine dead in its tracks.
One of the perks of being an outdoor writer is that sometimes you get to shoot guns before they make it to the stores, like Smith and Wesson's new M&P 10 semi-automatic rifle in camo.
Another perk is that occasionally you get invited to tag along on hunting and fishing trips, and on this day I was a guest at the new “Hog Wild” hunting operation in McClain County.
I would feel uncomfortable shooting a whitetail behind a high fence, but I have no such ethical dilemma about feral hogs. All of them should be blindfolded and executed for crimes against nature.
Feral hogs continue to overrun Oklahoma. They can be found in all 77 counties.
They have caused millions of dollars in property damage across the state and can spread disease. The state Agriculture Department cautions hunters to wear gloves when cleaning feral hogs and to cook the meat thoroughly.
Pastures uprooted by wild hogs appear as if bombs were dropped from the air. They frequently destroy golf courses and ravage corn and hay fields. A pack of porkers in southern Oklahoma even toppled the headstones at a rural cemetery.
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For more information about Hog Wild, visit www.hogwildok.com or call (405) 464-9453