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Feral pigs cause estimated damage of $ 2billion per year. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) in 2019 announced a 75 million dollar pilot project to control wild hogs. Feral pigs are destructive and a threat to the human population. They eat about everything and have no common predator. They multiply fast, pollute water bodies, and are a host to many harmful diseases.
It is legal to hunt for feral pigs in 29 states in the US. In some states, you can hunt all year round while in some, you have to wait for open season. Wild boars estimated population is 7 million, and they are established in 35 States.
Hunting alone cannot merely make a dent on their population. But they provide hunters with good meat supply and keeps other domestic animals like your dogs well fed. Hog hunting is extremely fun and most people do for sport while others do to protect crops and their land.
The Basics of Hog hunting
Hogs are like deers, and they are best to hunt at last light or the first light. They leave behind plenty of signs to follow them and like traveling in small feeding groups. Hogs are comfortable feeding on open agricultural fields but also like thick vegetations for quick cover.
Hog hunting is not as easy as they are intelligent, secretive, adaptable, and can be aggressive when cornered.
Don’t miss our beginners guide to hunting hogs here.
How to hunt Hogs with a bow
There is lots of information about hog hunting that you may get confused as to what is true and what is conjecture. In the past decade, the hog population has increased, and hog hunting has become a popular sport as well.
Most beginners want to know how to prepare for a hog hunt. There are many ways, including hunting with dogs. However, hunting with a bow and arrow requires special skills and knowledge of hog behavior.
Hogs feed on everything in sight
The day-to-day movements of hogs are influenced by lots of things. Among the major reasons include the search for food sources and hunting pressure. You can use food to lure a hog population and set a hunting zone beforehand.
The idea is to spend time scouting the woods looking for recent hog population signs. Check for urine smell and feces. When you find a hog population, you can set the hunting zone with corn. The best method is using an electric feeder that will dispense around One pound of corn twice a day.
Let the feral pigs feed for about a week undisturbed as you prepare your hunting gear for the coming hunt. You can set a ladder stand and wait for the wild boars to come to their favorite feeding spot.
Hunting Hogs with Oil
Areas that have a vast hog population have one thing in common. Hogs rub their bodies on almost all power poles. The reason is that the poles have creosote that acts as an insect repellant to the hogs. Another hog behavior that repels insects is rubbing their bodies in used motor oil.
You can use this hog behavior to set a trap easily. However, you must first check the hunting regulations of the State you are in. Some will not allow hunting with oil. If they do, this is how you set the hunting zone.
You can cut small saplings about 6 feet long. Select two trees that are apart and tie the tree saplings across 20 inches above the ground.
Cover burlap bags with used motor oil and hang them on the saplings. It is an artificial rub that attracts feral pigs more than corn.
Sometimes it is impossible to stalk wild boars within bow hunting range. When hogs get stacked in lush green vegetation, they have no reason to come out. You can spook them and get one shot at it before they all scamper.
There are boar grunt callers that mimic the sound of boars fighting. You can also make tender sounds that wild boars make when calling after a sow. Pig squealers are efficient and will attract a pig population to within bow range.
Killing your scent
Hogs have poor eyesight, but they make up with an excellent sensory organ of smell. If the wind carries your smell, they will disappear. All your efforts of a set up will be for nothing. Any method you use will not work if the wild boars get a whiff of your scent. Stalking, tree stand, or blind hunting, the wind is never your friend.
Always avoid walking in the trails the hogs will walk on. Before wild boars enter a territory, they usually smell the air for scents. You can use a scent eliminator spray or a wind checker to go against the direction of the wind.
Wild hogs are nocturnal feeders
After many years of humans hunting wild hogs, they had to adapt to become nocturnal feeders. Therefore you will have much success hunting at night than daytime.
Wild hogs are color blind to red and green light by principle. Hunting at night using a green light will not spook a feeding group of wild hogs. They will continue to feed and give you time to place your shots accurately.
Using a tactical hunting light kit will give you more success. But they are expensive. A simple flashlight covered with a green filter will also work efficiently and is affordable.
Types of Bows Used for Hog Hunting
There are four common types of hunting bows. Each comes with its set of rewards and challenges. Bows are quiet, and therefore you will always have the advantage of stealth.
You can make a bow from basic resources, while others are engineered to offer precision and weapons for survival. If you love hunting with bows, you will know that no one bow is superior to another. They all give different experiences.
A recurve bow can fire arrows at a far distance because of the physics behind the design. It is a recurve bow in two ways. It curves at the center towards you and the tips away from you. The recurve at the end of both tips of your bow gives more speed with less effort.
When you draw the string towards you, the end arch curve away from you, enabling you to deliver a deadly shot at distant targets. Recurve bows are good for beginners.
Types of recurve bows include modern and traditional bows. The difference is that you can detach modern recurve bows into pieces while a traditional bow is in one piece.
The compound bow is a favorite for most hog hunters because of the accuracy and power it delivers with minimal effort. The design uses a pulley system to allow the archer to get the maximum draw length effortlessly.
Compound bows can take down larger wild boars with ease than recurve bows. You can customize your bow at different draw weights depending on the prey you are hunting. It is because of this versatile nature that makes compound bows the best for hunting all kinds of game.
There are different compound bow sizes. Different sizes have different draw weights. Compound bows can have accessories like sight pins that improve your accuracy at various distances.
It is the only different type of bow. As it is a combination of a recurve or compound bow and a gun. It has a trigger that releases the arrow towards your target. Crossbows are accurate and will give you a better firing range than all other bows.
Modern hunters prefer using crossbows because it is easy to direct and shoot. They are lightweight and give more stealth. You can fire at long-distance targets accurately without spooking your prey.
It is similar to the compound bow. You can add accessories to the crossbow to make it more efficient in drawing, firing, and aiming.
It is the simplest bow to make. You only need two pieces, which include the string and the bow. It is the most challenging to use and need you to stalk your prey up close to get a better hit.
Traditional bows have no special mechanism to boost power and accuracy. It is not for the beginner hunter. You need to know power placement and accuracy to hit the wild boar at critical points.
The Best Arrows for Hog Hunting
Many types of arrow points define their uses. Some are for target practice while others are for hunting. Most target practice arrowheads resemble the weight of the hunting arrow tip you will use.
Types of arrowheads
You can shoot during target practice on things like foam, trees, or grass targets.
The arrowheads have small wires protruding to attach to soft targets like stumps, trees, and sticks during practice.
You can use this to stun or shock prey. The heads are flat instead of pointed and can be rubber or plastic coating. It kills small prey by shock, leaving your meat intact. You can flare up the tip to deliver a more devastating blow upon impact.
Mostly made of steel and has barbs to allow you to retrieve the fish when you strike it. The barbs are retractable to allow you to remove it from the flesh easily.
Broadhead arrow tip
It is the best arrowhead for hog hunting. You can use it on all types of bows. They are good for hunting big game as they have a high penetration ability. There are three different types of broadhead arrow tips.
Regardless of the ones you select, they must all be sharp and match the size of the game and equipment you will use.
• Fixed blade broadhead
These glues directly to the arrow shaft. Once you fix them, you cannot remove it.
• Removable blades
The design is so that you can attach and detach to the ferrule easily. When the arrow blades take damage, you can spare the broadhead.
They expand upon impact and are good for hunting small prey as the expansion reduces penetration. Suitable for hunters with experience and accuracy at hitting critical points of the game.
Critical Points to Hit When Hog Hunting
Skilled hunters know that the vital organs for a deer are not in the same position as that of a hog. You will need a different shot placement for most animals.
Getting a wrong shot placement can make you track a bleeding hog for many miles and can turn into an aggressive gruel.
There are two kinds of effective shots when bowhunting. You can either use broadside or quarter away shots. Quarter away shots target the heart and are the most effective though difficult to execute on a moving target.
You should aim for the heart pocket when the front leg is placed forward. Aim for the inside in what resembles an armpit
Broadside shots are good for smaller pigs. The principle is to pin the shoulders. When hunting big wild boars, aim at the midline on the back crease of the front shoulder. You should either hit the lungs or the heart.
To get a devastating shot, you should wait until the nearest leg is placed forward. The arrow will damage the upper lobes of the hog’s lungs. Arrows that hit too low strike the heart while the ones that aim at the midline puncture the lungs.
The Best Gear for Hog Hunting with a Bow
You can take the tactical approach of hunting and get gears that allow you to track your prey on all conditions. Some of these gears are luxury items, but they will give you an advantage when hunting for hogs.
The gears include
• Thermal optics are best for hunting at night as you track prey with their heat signatures.
• Scent elimination
For a more extensive guide on hog hunting in general go visit our article here.
Most Popular Bow Hunting Accessories
Best of luck with your bowhunting! let us know how it goes!
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36 years old, been hunting and fishing my entire life – love the outdoors, family, and all kinds of hunting and fishing! I have spent thousands of hours hunting hogs and training hunting dogs, but I’m always learning new stuff and really happy to be sharing them with you! hit me up with an email in the contact form if you have any questions.