North Carolina's Ag Commissioner Steve Troxler says that North Carolina has a prolem with feral hogs. They have an impact on just about everything to do with a farming operation...from crop damage, fields, wildlife habitat, game lands and streams. If it's got anything to do with dirt, they'll tear it up. They've also been know to go after other animals, including domestic pets, and are second only behind coyotes as the top predator of sheep and goats.
Feral hogs reproduce faster than rabbits, and have no natural predator other than man. They carry pseudorabies and swine brucellosis which could significantly impact commercial hog operations in NC if they were to pass those diseases to the state's commercial swine industry.
The Ag Department is leading a study committee to examine the impacts of feral swine importation and movement into and aroudn the state, the economic and disease risks, and the impacts on wildlife. The committe includes veterinarians, farmers, state and federal wildlife officials, hunters, and representatives of farm groups.
The committee will be making recommendations to the legislature on how to address the problem. Some of the measures being talked about include stiffer penalties for illegal imporation of hogs, movement restrictions, and beefing up laws pertaining to trapping and releaseing hogs.