Florida will receive millions in federal dollars to combat feral hogs

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PHOTO VIA USDA
  • Photo via USDA

Are you a Florida property owner dealing with, say “30 to 50 feral hogs" that just so happen to run into your yard while your small kids are playing for 3 to 5 minutes?

Well, the federal government has a pilot program that you may be interested in.

Last month, the USDA announced a new program called the Feral Swine Eradication and Control Pilot Program, with $33.75 million in funds going to partnership efforts with selected areas of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Texas.

Funded by the 2018 Farm Bill, the new program is a joint effort between the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, and hopes to eliminate feral hog populations with the help of the private sector and local governments.

According to the USDA, there are roughly 7 million invasive feral hogs in just 35 states, which cause an estimated $2 billion in agricultural damage every year through a practice called rooting and wallowing.

It just so happens that Florida is among the states with the highest population densities and associated damages in the country, says the agency.

“The projects selected for funding will allow APHIS and NRCS to collectively reduce the damage and disease caused by one of the most destructive and formidable invasive species in the United States,” said APHIS Administrator Kevin Shea in a statement.

The USDA is accepting proposals through Aug. 19.

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