[Market-farming] Digging Dogs and Feral Hogs, Anyone?

Kakerby kakerby at aol.com
Fri Feb 1 12:36:32 EST 2013

I'm on a small-scale hog owners list, and a variety of folks on that list have all-to-frequent experience with keeping domestic hogs in AND feral hogs out.  Several of them are in states (including TX) which have been particularly hard hit by feral hog populations.  If it's OK with you, I'll forward your email over there and get some ideas.  OR, I would invite you (or anyone) to consider joining the list (even if you don't have hogs) so that you can see all the responses, and possibly exchange info back and forth a little more readily.

Standing by here to see how you'd like to proceed.  But in the meantime, I sure don't envy you your task.  Glad we don't have feral hogs here (yet).  There are some things to be said about living on the other side of not one but two major geographical boundaries from the rest of the continental USA.  Just keeping our pigs where they belong, is enough of a chore.
Kathryn Kerby
Snohomish, WA

-----Original Message-----
From: Barking Cat Farm <barkingcatfarm at mindspring.com>
To: Market Farming <market-farming at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Fri, Feb 1, 2013 9:24 am
Subject: [Market-farming] Digging Dogs and Feral Hogs, Anyone?


We're embarking on a project to reinforce our farm's perimeter fence.  It is 
currently 4' field fence, which has worked well on coyotes and other non-deer 
larger mammals.  However, we have a problem with digging, particularly from the 
local pack of vicious dogs.  We need to find a way to keep them out, and since 
I'm modifying the fence anyway, we want to also exclude feral hogs.  We don't 
have them yet, but they've been spotted in the vicinity, so it's only a matter 
of time until they find us.  What damaging behaviors and solutions have you 
experienced with respect to feral hogs?

More detail:  Our perimeter has a variety of micro-environments, so it may be a 
hybrid design works the best.  
- Some areas are heavily vegetative. We don't plan to modify these areas at this 
time, as the vegetation is doing a good job of exclusion and we say if it's not 
broken don't fix it.;

- in other areas we have purposely planted rose bushes and other low growing 
plants which will do a good job of exclusion once they are more mature. In these 
areas we might need to do some chicken wire "elled" at the bottom of the field 
fence and extended out a few inches and stapled down to prevent digging until 
roses and other plants mature, hot wire not a good idea due to vegetative load.; 

- and in other areas we have bare ground where vegetation is not growing due to 
heavy forest shade, for example.  In these areas, not quite sure whether a hot 
wire or a barrier mesh similar to above is a better solution.  We know mesh 
works against digging dogs, but not sure about hogs.  Thoughts?

My question to those who have dealt with feral hogs and fencing is how, 
specifically, they damage and/or breech fencing?  Do they ram and break it, do 
they dig under it, or what?

Note: please don't suggest poisoning, shooting, or trapping.  We have 
thoughtfully considered and ruled all three out for a variety of reasons.  We 
feel that exclusion is our best option and are looking for guidance on that 

Many thanks in advance,

Laurie Bostic
Barking Cat Farm
Heath, Texas
barkingcatfarm at mindspring.com

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