Wildlife Services Division and partners are winning the war against feral swine in Oklahoma, at least during the last year.
Wildlife Services, a division of Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry (ODAFF), eliminated a record-number of the “destructive, invasive” species in 2017.
A total of about 188 percent more feral swine were killed during 2017 than 2016, and 29,811 more than were eliminated in 2011, according to the department.
The goal for 2017 was to eliminate 14,000 feral swine in 2017, said Secretary of Agriculture Jim Reese. It was reported this month that Wildlife Services killed 17,002 in 2017. In 2016, 11,206 were killed, and 7,808 were eliminated in 2015.
However, all feral swine efforts combined eliminated a grand total of 32,237.
Feral swine are a non-native species to the state, and detrimentally impact agricultural production and natural resources in Oklahoma, according to the department.
“Because of feral swine, citizens of Oklahoma suffer damage to crops, livestock and wildlife habitat. Feral swine also pose a health risk to humans, livestock, companion animals and native wildlife. The department’s goal is to render the state of Oklahoma free of feral swine,” the department said.
The Wildlife Services program is cooperatively funded by the ODAFF, USDA/APHIS.Wildlife Services, Oklahoma counties, other state and federal agencies, city governments and private organizations.