As spring temperatures rise, turkeys are gobbling and feral hogs continue their destruction of natural resources across the state.
As part of the agency’s continued effort to control feral hogs, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s Wildlife Management Division staff will continue to trap feral hogs through turkey season on several wildlife management areas. Wildlife management and enforcement division officials met recently and recommended continued baiting and trapping operations to maximize every feasible opportunity to remove the pests.
On some WMAs, trapping slowed or ceased during turkey season due to the potential for baiting violations during permit and open turkey seasons. This practice often delayed removal efforts by four to six weeks until turkey season was complete. This often resulted in prolonged difficult trapping conditions as natural food resources were more plentiful during the latter portion of spring.
Another benefit to continued trapping is the reduced disturbance during permit hunts on certain WMAs. During these permit hunts, only a limited number of individuals are on the WMAs, usually for a three-day period. Trapping during spring turkey season also allows AGFC managers to keep gaining ground on reducing the number of feral hogs on WMAs. AGFC personnel will designate small, closed areas where feral hog trapping activities are taking place with official “No Trespassing” signs warning the public to steer clear and avoid traps and equipment.
Area managers and biologists will utilize alternative baits that are less likely to attract turkeys and measures will be taken to reduce the exposure of baits during turkey season.