Pseudorabies Virus in Feral Hogs

Pseudorabies virus (PRV), also known as Aujeszky’s disease, is an infectious viral disease that is caused by the Suid herpesvirus 1 (SuHV-1).  The name “pseudorabies” means “rabies like” or “false rabies;” however, PRV is a herpes virus and is not related to the rabies virus.  Although humans cannot be infected, PRV is found in several species of mammals (for example, cattle, sheep, goats, deer, bears, cats, dogs, mink, skunks, raccoons, rabbits and rats) as well as swine.  It represents a …

Why do feral hogs rub on trees?

Feral hogs will rub on trees, fence posts, utility poles, and other objects in an effort to control external parasites. These are called rubs and are not breeding or territory related.  Sometimes rubs are also used to simply scratch an itch.Feral hog rub on utility pole.

Feral Hog Content

History and Biology

Feral hog biology

Feral hog history

Feral hog distribution


Feral hog nuisance issues

Human interactions with feral hogs

Feral hog diseases and health risks

Feral hog safety issues and concerns

Feral hog livestock issues and concerns

Economics associated with feral hogs

Management and Control

Feral hog sign

Baits used for trapping feral hogs

Feral hog traps

Feral hog exclusion

Feral hog laws and regulations


Useful Links

What does a feral hog track look like?

Feral hog tracks are similar to white-tailed deer tracks in size, but feral hog tracks are broader and have more rounded front toes than the pointed front toes of deer.  Also, if feral hog tracks show dew claws, they are wider than the front toes, whereas in white-tailed deer the dew claws are mostly the same width as the front toes.

Feral hog tracks.     

Feral hog track, note the wide-setting dew claws.


White-tailed deer track.

White-tailed deer track, note the dew claws are in line with …

National Feral Hog Problem

Feral hogs are a growing nationwide problem in the United States at the present time.  Not native to the Western Hemisphere, the presence of these animals here is solely attributable to both intentional and accidental introductions by man.  All feral hogs (also called wild hogs) in the United States belong to the species Sus scrofa

Brought to the United States during the early 1500s, feral hogs have had a long history in this country.  In spite of a fairly …

Common Mistakes While Trapping Groups of Feral Hogs

Figure 1.  A corral trap using only two 20-ft livestock panels.  Use of 5 panels would be preferred to capture entire sounders.  Photo courtesy of Texas AgriLife Extension Service.

Trapping feral hogs using corral traps is one of the most common, and in many cases the most efficient, technique for managing feral hog damage to land resources.  Whereas most trappers measure the success of their removal program in numbers of feral hogs captured (and subsequently euthanized or removed), the more …

What is the most effective bait for trapping feral hogs?

Research by Dr. Tyler Campbell with USDA-APHIS suggests that hogs are attracted to baits with a sweet pungent odor, such as strawberry or berry flavorings.  Based on this research, several commercial hog baits contain some type of strawberry flavoring.  Shelled corn, fermented grain, catfish “stink” baits, and overripe fruit and vegetables have also been used successfully.  Landowners are encouraged to vary baits among traps to determine what feral hogs find most attractive at a particular location or season.…

How many feral hogs are there in the United States?

There is no accurate estimate for the total number of feral hogs in the United States.  However, by adding all of the minimum and maximum feral hog population estimates for each state, there could be from three to eight million animals.  However, scientists are uncertain as to the accuracy of feral hog population numbers reported for each state.…

Use of Box Traps to Capture Feral Hogs

Figure 1.  A litter of feral hog shoats captured in a box trap in Texas (Texas AgriLife Extension Service Photo).


Box traps come in a variety of designs and shapes. Most are built from livestock panels with steel pipe or angle iron frames.  Because most traps are built by the users, they differ greatly in size, portability, door configuration, flooring, and roofing. In some areas, ready-to-use box traps with several different styles of gates can be purchased.  A common …