MO state lawmaker files bill to deal with feral hog problem - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

MO state lawmaker files bill to deal with feral hog problem

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A Missouri state lawmaker recently filed legislation to help deal with the serious issue Missouri continues to face with its feral hog population.

State Rep. Sonya Anderson hopes to create serious penalties that will discourage individuals from releasing more hogs into the wild.

Her legislation, HB 283, would create a fine of $5,000 for an individual who releases a wild or feral hog onto public or private land that is not enclosed by a fence to contain the animals.

A first-time offender would pay the fine and also have all hunting, fishing, and trapping permits rescinded for a period of three years. For a second offense, an individual would pay a fine of $10,000 and permanently forfeit all hunting, fishing, or trapping permits.

“Because feral hogs reproduce so rapidly, it takes only a few individuals releasing these animals into the wild to cause an enormous problem. My legislation can put some real teeth into our laws that will effectively discourage this kind of behavior that has made a bad problem even worse,” said Anderson, R-Springfield.

Anderson noted that feral hogs can destroy an entire field of crops overnight, and they can cause extensive damage to the land and waterways. Feral hogs are a national problem with the USDA reporting that at least 35 states see an estimated $1.5 billion in damage each year from the animals.

Anderson said she hopes to see a comprehensive approach to getting the feral hog population under control in Missouri.

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