This is the video transcript. To watch the video for this episode click here.
ADAM: (Whispering) Ready? We gotta go, dude. We gotta go.
ADAM: Well, deer season is officially over for us but that doesn’t mean we’re gonna stop hunting. We’re down at the range today. Got the Winchester out, we’re gonna sight it in cause we’re getting ready to do a little hog hunting.
ADAM: Well, during deer season we had the guns sighted in with Deer Season XP. But now that we’re hog hunting, we’re breaking out the Razorback XT. Deer Season XP is designed specifically for the thin coat of a deer so it has rapid expansion. But the Razorback XT has a little bit of a delayed expansion. That way it can get through the tough hide and bone of a pig, but still have great results.
ADAM: Fire in the hole.
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ADAM: The slow time after deer season and before spring turkey season begins results in cabin fever for a lot of people. But this week we had the opportunity to get back to hunting and also help a fellow land owner.
ADAM: We were recently invited by our good friend Martin Smith, to his property in western Oklahoma, to help reduce the number of feral hogs on his property. Feral hogs are non-native, invasive species and it’s to believe that they came to the Americas with the first explorers. Feral hog population has increased rapidly; they are now in more than 30 states.
ADAM: Feral hogs can do all kinds of damage to habitat, often rooting through the soil, destroying food plots, commercial crops and eating the native vegetation. This limits what’s available to the native species. Not only do feral hogs consume their fair share of vegetation, they are often overlooked as omnivores. If given the opportunity, they can consume the eggs of a ground nesting species or a newborn mammal, like a young fawn.
ADAM: Well, we’re out in western Oklahoma today on our friend Mr. Smith’s property. Grant was here almost two years ago – developed a management plan for this property – so Matt and I are out today taking a tour and seeing how well it’s progressed. One of the biggest suggestions Grant made while he was out here was adding the additional acres of food. And if you remember, he was standing in almost in the same spot looking over this area that was mainly grass and other native species and he said, “This is gonna make a great food plot.” And as you can see, Mr. Smith has done just that.
ADAM: One thing we are noticing about this food plot – is another reason why we’re out here – hogs. We’re out in the food plot now and you can see there is hog damage all around me where they’ve been rooting around, eating the food plot – basically destroying the food plot. We’re seeing a lot of tracks but more specifically small piglet tracks. That’s because feral hogs reproduce at a very high rate. And that is how the population can become out of control very quickly. This is a great looking food plot back behind me. We met our needs of adding the additional acres for food plots but it’s gonna be important for us to control these hogs before they do more damage.
ADAM: But it’s still northwest wind?
MATT: It was last night; we can check again.
ADAM: So, if they are down in here, I think it’s “thread the needle” but I think it will still work.
ADAM: We were told there was a large sounder using this field and after looking at the pictures, we were blown away at how many pigs were using this area.
ADAM: So, pulled the card, probably on the first. They were there at two o’clock.
MATT: That’s that big girl.
ADAM: That’s that big, big sow we’re after.
ADAM: Look at her.
MATT: (Whispering) Oh my God.
ADAM: I mean she stands a whole head taller than the other big ones. I hope we shoot and she dies in sight and we don’t go crawling off in the bushes for her.
MATT: Because I’m looking around here and it’s tall grass around there.
ADAM: I don’t want to track a stinking, wounded pig in tall grass. And aggressive like that.
MATT: Well, yeah, I mean…
ADAM: She is aggressive with the other pigs.
ADAM: I wonder what she would do with a two-legged person.
ADAM: Looking over the pictures, the biggest one of the bunch was a big red and white sow. And she seemed to be the boss hog so that’s the one we were after.
ADAM: (Whispering) Well, it’s the first afternoon in western Oklahoma on our hog hunt. Toured the property this morning, saw a lot of great things but one thing we kept seeing was hog damage. Tonight we’re trying to take care of that. We got a bow and a Winchester rifle in here. If they come in close we’re gonna shoot them with the Prime bow, but if they hang out there we’ll shoot at them with the rifle. Either way, our goal is to remove hogs – particularly sows. So, we’ll see what happens.
ADAM: We were hardly even settled in the blind when the action started.
UNKNOWN: (Whispering) Look!
UNKNOWN: (Whispering) Oh my gosh.
ADAM: This large sounder entered the field to the south and they quickly closed the distance.
ADAM: As the cloud of dust settled, we could see that big red and white sow – right in the middle of the pack.
ADAM: (Whispering) Ready?
MATT: (Whispering) Yeah.
ADAM: (Whispering) You good?
MATT: (Whispering) Yeah.
ADAM: (Whispering) You ready?
MATT: (Whispering) Yeah.
ADAM: (Whispering) I don’t think they are gonna run off.
ADAM: (Whispering) She’s passed through.
MATT: (Whispering) Yeah, she’s slowing way down.
ADAM: (Whispering) They are gonna come back. No, they’re not. What do you think?
MATT: (Whispering) Yeah, I think they will.
ADAM: (Whispering) I think they’ll come back. That arrow zipped through her.
MATT: (Whispering) Oh, yeah, that was no problem for that arrow, was it?
MATT: (Whispering) That’s a big ole hog now.
ADAM: (Whispering) Ahhhh.
MATT: (Whispering) Oh my.
ADAM: (Whispering) Wow. That happened fast. It is 4:24. We’ve been in the blind…mah…
MATT: (Whispering) Half hour.
ADAM: (Whispering) …half hour maybe, something like that. I don’t even know.
MATT: (Whispering) Maybe 40 minutes.
ADAM: (Whispering) And that is the pig we were after. Big sow. Really big sow. Biggest one of the bunch. There are several groups coming in here but I think that’s the main group that has been in this area. Big, reddish-white hog. Got the arrow. You saw when they left, how dusty it was across that field so it’s no surprise that the front part of the arrow and the broadhead is just, it’s just dust. The broadhead just zipped through her. Um, there is a lot of blood on it but it’s hard to tell how much because it’s just caked in dust. There is blood all around the vanes. We reviewed the footage and right about the time she got to the Eagle beans at the other end of the field her back end dropped like she was starting to lose some gas. And, ah, she went over the hill really slowly so, we expect her to be just inside the wood line or right at the wood line. We’re going to hang tight, hopefully those other pigs will come back; we’ll pick out the biggest sow out of them and try to take another one out.
ADAM: The next morning we went back to where we found last blood and picked up the trail.
ADAM: (Quietly) I don’t know how I saw that, but that’s a little bitty ole leaf.
MATT: (Quietly) You can see it right inside that.
ADAM: (Quietly) There is blood right there.
ADAM: Look what I see.
MATT: Got her?
ADAM: Got her.
MATT: Oh my gosh! Holy cow.
ADAM: Honestly, a lot prettier than I thought she was. She’s really red, almost orange back here, then blonde up here in the front and some grey. Really pretty pig. I kinda feel a little like, there’s no antlers. (Laughter) I don’t know what she weighs. I’ll be curious to – I mean she’s in the 200s.
MATT: Oh yeah, I was going to say she’s easy 200.
ADAM: You can see what the Striker did to her. Let me pull her around here so you can see it, but definitely a lung-liver I’m guessing.
MATT: The more you roll her around the more I’m thinking, “How are we getting her out of here?” She is huge!
ADAM: The celebration soon turned to work as we had to drag her out and take her back to process the meat. When handling feral hogs and processing the meat, it’s important to wear gloves. They have been known to transmit diseases to humans – so we want to take every precaution and use the proper gear. Processing a hog is a lot like we process a deer, start out with field dressing and then remove the hide.
ADAM: With the pork chilling in the cooler, it was time to grab the Winchester gun and head back for another hunt. As we left the lodge, we noticed the large sounder already in the field so it’s time for us to try and slip into range.
ADAM: Here we go.
ADAM: Looking over the lay of the land, we only had one option so Matt and I prepared for the stalk.
ADAM: The hogs were out in the wheat field – the wind was out of the southwest – just to the east with a big, native grass field. So we had to slip through the cedars, get into the grass field, slip up the fence line and work our way into range.
ADAM: With the wind in our favor, we crept into the fence line and prepared for the shot.
ADAM: (Whispering) What? I’m going to shoot that black one.
ADAM: (Whispering) Ready? We gotta go dude, we gotta go. Easy. Ready?
ADAM: Whoo! Three down baby!
ADAM: After the last shot rang out and the dust had settled, the Razorback XT ammo had lived up to its reputation because three hogs lay dead in the field. Wow! This action was fast-paced but I’ve learned if given the opportunity, you better take advantage of it.
ADAM: Big ole sow. Big, it’s amazing how like, the black pigs they just look, ah, jet black, just shiny. There is the first one, let’s go check out the second one. Yep. Another big sow. I shot this one, yeah, right there. This one’s got a little brown to it. Teeth are a little longer. This one looks a little meaner than that other one. Another sow.
ADAM: Come here. I’m gonna show you this. Look, this is why we’re in here shooting these things. This is from today. Look at this. I mean I’ll step out here in the middle; it’s a foot lower than the actual top of the field. Being a tractor driver, I can tell you this is the last thing you want to run into.
ADAM: When Mr. Smith met up with us in the field, we noticed that all three pigs were sows. That is four piglet producing pigs, removed in two days.
ADAM: I’ve got good news for you!
ADAM: They’re all three sows.
ADAM: When trapping hogs isn’t an option, aggressively hunting them is an alternative. Focus on removing the big sows and pressuring them. Once hogs sense danger, they’ll most likely move to another area where they feel safer.
ADAM: Feral hogs offer a great opportunity to do a little hunting when you can’t chase deer or turkeys. We really appreciate Mr. Smith’s invitation to come out to his property in western Oklahoma.
ADAM: We’re continuing our tour of Mr. Smith’s property in western Oklahoma today. Yesterday, we were happy to see that he had implemented our plan of adding additional acres of food plots. We’re even happier today when we see that he is already started removing cedars.
ADAM: I’m in an area now where just a few weeks ago, there was a large cedar tree – stumps back behind me. Of course there was nothing below it but cedar duff. But just outside the cedar canopy – or where the cedar canopy was – is lush, thick, native grasses. Now that the cedar has been removed, sunlight and rainfall will be able to reach the soil and it won’t take long – it’ll be back to its native habitat of grasses and forbs.
ADAM: We moved out into a little open area amongst the cedars. And this is just a great example of what we’re hoping will recolonize the area where the cedars have been removed. We’re looking around, there is a lot of different legumes. There is some ragweed, which is great for wildlife. There’s a lot of clumps of little bluestem, just like this scattered out. It’s just thick. It’s great bedding and habitat for wildlife.
ADAM: I’d bed down here if I was a deer.
ADAM: As is true for a lot of us, controlling Eastern Red Cedar is a continued process throughout the years but we’re happy to see Mr. Smith is off to a great start.
ADAM: Hope you get a chance to get out this week and enjoy Creation. Whether you’re chasing hogs or doing a little shed hunting, remember to do it all for the glory of God. Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.
MATT: Ugh. This is like a little tank you're dragging through the woods.
ADAM: All right. Gotta get…
ADAM: ….her nose up. We’re gonna inch her right here. Look at those teeth.
MATT: Here we go.
ADAM: Yeah. We’re getting somewhere now.
UNKNOWN: (Inaudible) Drag right here.