Texas

Hunters fight so-called 'feral hog apocalypse' in Texas

FILE: Feral hogs cost Texas farmers millions a year, and the state's population is at 2.5 million.

FILE: Feral hogs cost Texas farmers millions a year, and the state's population is at 2.5 million.  (Reuters)

Texas has a feral hog problem. 

The state's agriculture commissioner said Tuesday that he has a solution: a human blood-thinner that proves especially deadly in swine. 

Sid Miller, the commissioner, said there is only a “minimal” threat to other animals. Hunters will be able to see that the substance was consumed because the fat will be bright blue, MyStatesman.com reported.

“They’re so prolific, you can’t hardly keep them in check,” Miller told the paper. “This is going to be the hog apocalypse, if you like: If you want them gone, this will get them gone.”

The paper reported that the pesticide used is called “Kaput Feral Hog Lure,” which will be bait laced with warfarin—the human blood thinner.

VIDEO: TOP NEW GEAR FOR HUNTERS

State officials have downplayed the threat to other wildlife. But some hunters disagree, and say poison is not a viable option. Hunters in the state have collected more than 12,000 signatures in opposition of the poison.

The report said that Louisiana is considering the poison, but one state wildlife official warned that the crumbs that a hog leaves behind could affect black bears and other animals.

These feral hogs cost the state’s agriculture industry about $50 million a year in damage. The Austin Statesman reported that these hogs were introduced to North America by Spanish settlers who released domestic pigs into the woods to breed.

The state already allows aerial hunting which reportedly results in about 27,000 killed hogs annually.

“We don’t think poison is the way to go,” Eydin Hansen, the vice president of the Texas Hog Hunters Association, told CBSNews.com. He went on to say, “If a hog is poisoned, do I want to feed it to my family? I can tell you, I don’t.”He also mentioned the risks of another animal—like a coyote—eating a dead carcass. “We’re gonna after possible the whole ecosystem.”